I’m jumping ahead in the story of my back. I did have surgery on January 9th, and it was “successful”, though my extrusion was much larger than expected, and my nerve damage more extensive. The recovery thus far has been complicated by every member of my family, including myself, coming down with a violent stomach virus. I am in far more pain that I anticipated I would be after the surgery (which was sold to me as something that would leave me completely pain-free). I am going to try to post updates, simply because writing them does make me feel better.
Today I took a walk. I shuffled slowly down the street, kicking a happy clump of ball moss with my weak but working legs. The sun was already low, but it was warm and bright and optimistic.
I walked further than I have been (I started these walks four days ago), cheered on by the perfect weather and the solitude. My mother took all the girls to gymnastics, so there was no one to push or answer or herd toward safety. It’s still January, and there are at least a handful of pitiful winter days to come, but every branch is humming with readiness for spring. Just waiting for its cue.
I was reminded of a scribbled page from the fall, when I was dissecting my depression and lamenting my productivity. My little graph holds true, I feel the ascension into the lengthening days, the big ideas, the boundless hope, the filled up pages.
Even with my raw nerve begging me to stay still, with the electric pain that jolts down my leg if I do not choose the perfect steps, the perfect execution, I feel better today than yesterday.
Tomorrow I see the surgeon. I assume he will release me drive, to hold Harriet without help, and to slowly begin some sort of physical therapy. He will likely also tell me that the nerve pain I still feel is normal, based on the how compressed it was when it got in there and cut it loose. He will tell me there is more pain ahead. But if my graph is accurate, I’ve got until July to deal with it before it crushes my spirit.