A month ago marked the three-yr mark of being graduated from University. I have a degree to show for it and a fancy lil "R.N." pin I wear on my name tag at work because, let's face it, nowadays it's not so easy to tell apart the nurses from the cleaning ladies because everybody wears scrubs.
Now, you think that I would be able to use some of that wisdom that I've learned and apply it to myself after my back surgery. You think that I wouldn't need to get checked out ONE LAST TIME by a doctor just so he can say, "Yep, things are going as expected, keep doing what you're doing".
Let me start off by saying, I am ridiculously blessed in how I've recovered. Seriously. I know that.
Pain in my back is like background noise. It's usually there but most times you are focused on other things and don't even realize it is there. Every now and then, I forget that I have the strength of an eighty-yr-old grandma and will try to lift a 300-lb. patient and my back will kindly remind me of my lack of muscle later but all I need is a quick reboot (AKA lay down on the ground for 4 minutes) and I am good to go again.
Basically, I need to work out and rebuild all that long lost muscle but every time I do yoga or lift weights or run and I feel a twinge in my back my overactive imagination sees my spinal cord getting twisted up in a rouge screw in my back and I just can't bring myself to continue. The odds of that happening are 1,000,000:1. But then again, wasn't my whole accident?
13 months post-op, this had to stop so I booked an appointment with my surgical doctor and went in with my updated x-rays praying that he would take one look at them and say, "Yep, things are going as expected, keep doing what you're doing" and I could go away knowing that the twinges I was feeling were the twinges of a weak, flabby back and not the strangulation of my spinal cord.
"Your back will never be 100%... Take care of it..." blah blah blah
...and then he did said what I was hoping for.
I was throwing myself a mini-celebration in my head when he continued.
"One of the most important things you can do is keep your weight down," he gives me the once over,
"You've gained weight since I saw you last, haven't you?" cue my mouth falling open.
"Lose it; keep your weight down"
Maybe all those cookies I ate wasn't such a hot idea after all eh?
Good thing he cleared me to work out, do yoga, and just live life (albeit somewhat cautiously) because I apparently need to lose those 5 lbs extra I got laying around...
Ahhhhh, nothing like a Dr. laying it to ya straight.