17 days left and counting

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 4/5/2009 12:15 PM (GMT -6)   
 Hello to all, I have 17 days left before having my laminectomy. I am hopeful and ready. I hope this is the right decision to make. I hope that I will have good results from it. And even though there is a possibility of further surgeries, I really hope that I won't need anymore. I am scared of the unknown. I have problems asking people to do things for me. I know that I will need help for a little while. I am worried about the finances. I don't have enough sick/vacation time accumulated at work to carry me through the 6 weeks they say I'll be out. I will go on short term disability after 2 weeks, which will only pay 60% of my pay.  But again, I have to make myself think positive.  This constant pain has pretty much turned me into a Eeyore and I am trying to work on it.
My house used to be clean. I can't do it anymore.  And just sitting here looking around at all the things that need to be done almost makes me sick physically.  I push myself to work everyday. I only take my percocet when I get home, and by then my left leg is all but dragging.  I take more on the weekend.  I simply can't push myself anymore. I am trying to tell myself that housework will always be here. My husband and my son will just have to do it. But it still feels wrong. And then again, I didn't welcome this pain and agony in my life. I need to just let it all go.  I need to concentrate on keeping a good outlook on myself, my life and my recovery after the surgery.  All the little things, like housework, get all over me.  It's silly to let it bother me like it does.  It isn't filthy, just not clean like it used to be.
My aunt told me last week that there is always light at the end of the darkness. I am going to hold on to that. I need to believe it.
As far as my husband goes... he does take my percocet.  I hide it but he ALWAYS finds it.  Someone here suggested getting a box with a lock.  I think I will do it.  He doesn't have a condition in which he needs it.  He doesn't need a PM doctor. He has a problem.  I have had countless talks with him.  It makes my furious with him for it. And ofcourse he always says he won't do it again.  I know I will have to make somes serious decisions about this after I have the surgery. As much as I don't want to , I know I will need him after I have the surgery-I'll have to have him take the kids to school and daycare...There is no one else to do all these things I'll need help with. I do love him. He is good to me in a lot of ways.  But it hurts me so much to know that he would take my meds knowing that I do need them. I am in constant pain. I am tired of counting them. I am more than mad at him for doing this to me.  A huge part of me wants him to pack his things and get out of my house and my life.  I would never do something to the one I love that would hurt them like this. I don't understand it at all...I'll keep the bottle in my pocket of my pants and continue sleeping with it in my pillowcase, until I get the box to lock it up.  It is more that a shame. It is a disgrace!!
Thanks to all of you who read my post and offered support.  I means alot to me.  Sorry to ramble on so much.  I think this is a awesome group of people sharing a common ground-pain...We all need encouragement and hope from one another.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 1235
   Posted 4/5/2009 12:32 PM (GMT -6)   
You are absolutely right honey, you should not have to deal with this, and especially right now. I am concerned that he might take some of your meds post op and you are going to need them. Is there anyone, your aunt maybe, who might be able to come and stay with you, at least for a few days post op and go to the pharmacy to pick up meds for you? You can find those lock boxes/medical safes that I mentioned in some pharmacies, especially mom and pop types, or they may be able to order one for you. You will have to hide the keys, but it will offer you more protection than having to sleep with your pain meds in a pillow case.
As far as the house keeping goes, I'm sure that we all understand that feeling of not being able to do it, yet, at the same time, frustration that our spouses or kids don't chip in to help. You might try making lists for them to do things on certain days and see if that helps.
You will not be able to do those things in the immediate post op period and you don't want to try , because you need to follow your surgeon's instructions.
I wish you the best and you will have to make some decisions about what to do with your husband and his addiction problems, but right now, you need to focus on you....and getting you through this surgery so that you are in a physical condition to handle it if he does need to leave for a bit.
PLIF/TLIF Fusion w/Instrumentation L4-5 Spondololysthesis L4-5.Laminectomies L4-5, foraminal stenosis L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1, herniations L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1, central canal stenosis L3-4, L4-5 and L5-S1
POST OP CES 3/30-06
Neurogenic Bladder and Bowel, bilateral numbness legs and feet
Revision for failed Back surgery, pseudoarthrosis L4-5, hemilaminectomies L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1, bmp added to revision fusion, replaced two bent screws that were reversing out of vertebrae - August 2, 2007
On going back pain and neuropathic pain, failed back surgery, consult for scs, decided not to do that at this point.
Adhesive Arachnoiditis also......just what I didn't need..9/08- adding bilateral ulnar neuropathy with severe compression to the mix. They want me to see a surgeon for ulnar nerve surgery, but I'm not biting.
I've seen enough surgeons over the last few years.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1158
   Posted 4/5/2009 12:41 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm worried about you post surgerical. I deal with the same issues you do. My father who is 70 has been put on morphine and he don't like it. I believe because he gets a better high off codiene then he does morphine. My son who is 20 doesn't take them but sells them. I'm embarrassed to say it but hes went down the wrong path. So I have two people that I have to hide my meds from. My husband had to rotary cuff surgeries and has his pills on him 24/7. Its sad that these people are so selfish. My father has told me "I hurt and the morphine wasn't cutting it" "I can give you a few of mine". I don't think so I'm now under a contract but he doesn't seem to understand this. Even though he is underone now. He just tells me all the ways to beat the system.

I believe alot more of us deal with this that we really don't talk about.

You need to take care of yourself. Worry will only hinder your recovery!!!!
Chronic Kidney Stones, PKD (Polycystic Kidney Disease), Chronic Kidney Failure, Severe Hypertension, Urological RSD

Tony McGuire
Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 483
   Posted 4/5/2009 2:05 PM (GMT -6)   
I am so sorry to hear about what you are dealing with, Anice.

Is there NO help around for you? Neighbor, friend, Pastor?

I'm not sure I'd recommend keeping the meds or the keys on your person. Is there a possibility he would fight with you to get them?

It kinda sounds like you need one of the electronic dispensing thingies as well. You set a schedule for # times and when during the day, and a compartment that holds that scheduled med opens ONLY at the scheduled time. Otherwise, you can't get the med.

Then, I'd hold the main supply in a lockbox/safe that you load the weekly supply from.

My wife is doing this for me, since I accidently took 3 scheduled doses at once. The medication delivery drawers, or whatever you call them, are going to only open when they should to give me the appropriate dosages.

That way, I can't accidently take more than I should if I am in a fog as I am now often to fall into.

This would keep your meds safe as well - hide/lock them from yourself so you don't accidently take the wrong dosage, Anice/LLPLUV.

If they offer to help with your dosing, suggest that helping with the vacuuming (or whatever) would really help more.

Sorry, best I can some up with.

I wish you both the best.
Wife: Liz, the choice of a lifetime
Dogs: Koshka & Chomp

White Beard
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3699
   Posted 4/5/2009 3:21 PM (GMT -6)   
anice you have 17 days so don't over do it and try to get a bunch of stuff done in that time. But do try to get arrangements made so that you will have help and assistance after your surgery. Because after you come home from your surgery it is extremely important for you to follow your post-op instructions to the letter! You must not strain or over do it! If you need support keep posting right here, we will all support you! For as long as you need it and then some!

I must admit I am a little concerned about your situation, and with you being a nurse, I know allot of times we have the "do as I say not as I do" mentality, and we do tend to over do it, and say we can handle it! Heck isn't that, what you have been doing? It sure sounds like it from your post! But believe me, that will get you into trouble, if you continue to do that after your surgery! You really need to start thinking about how you are going to look out for yourself for a while, and that includes getting yourself some help and assistance! We can give you the moral support, but you will need much more than that to make your surgery a success! But you can do it! Just be Good to Yourself!
Good Luck to You anice!

White Beard

I'm Retired USAF, went back to school and became an RN, and now am on ful disalbility!

Degenerative Disc (affecting mostly the thorasic disc but all levels involved), C6/7 laminectomy/diskectomy& fusion, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!)

Medications: Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 4/5/2009 3:50 PM (GMT -6)   
You've been given a lot of good advice here. I wonder, is there anyone - a close friend or relative - you might be able to stay with for a week or so after your surgery? And let your husband and the kids take care of themselves? This would also take care of the post-op meds situation.

Like Sandi, I am concerned about that. You are not going to be able to get up and get your meds, go to the pharmacy to get them (at the very least have someone else pick them up, or see if they can deliver them - you can't trust your husband, sadly). Your post op meds may be even stronger (because you will need them) and running out could cause you extreme distress.

My suggestion to you would be to use these next 17 days to set up a plan (even a chart) for your husband and children re: who's responsible for what chores, etc., and begin having them "practice" now. That you will NOT be able to do these things and if dinner doesn't get cooked they won't eat, and if the wash doesn't get done they won't have clothes. Be firm about it. You are entitled to take care of yourself.

But the meds situation with your husband needs to be addressed with people you can trust. I don't think you can trust him in 17 days. Leave that for after you're healed, but protect your meds.


Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16573
   Posted 4/5/2009 4:03 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Anise and welcome HW. I am a little late in posting, I did read your original post.

By the way, I don't know if you answered someone that asked, are you having your surgery done by a neurosurgeon or an orthopod? With the leg pains and what not, I sure hope your answer is a neuro. they just deal with the nerves so much more than the orthos. Just my opinion.

Well, to say the least you have an awful lot on your plate. I will be honest, with your description of your symptoms I don't know how you have made it this far, trying to juggle everything. I am glad to see you seem to have a good attitude towards the surgery and that right there has alot to with how you will do after surgery in many ways. By being aggressive towards taking care of your health issues lets hope and pray for a full recovery. You do know that is a real possibility. Letting things go too long with nerve involvement is never good because of it leading to permament nerve damage that no surgery can fix. At least by trying to fix it early you have a higher chance of a success rate. I think you know by now all of us HW are behind you 500% and will be here for you no matter what.

I would suggest that you get your pain meds refilled if possible before your surgery and have them available so that you don't have to have the husband being involved with picking up your script. I would be very tempted to blow his cover right in front of my dr and let the dr give him a wrast of ___. Make him feel like the sneak he is. Shame on him, how disgusting. Its people like him that make things real difficult for people like us with CP. I don't mean to blast you on this subject, but its the truth. You need to get you some kind of a lockbox before your surgery to insure when you need your meds they will be available. I really would hate to think of having surgery and then get home only to find out that someone that is suppose to love & care for me has taken them. Get this done before your surgery, you have time.

Don't worry about the house, it will always be there. Do as one of the others suggested, give each one a list of things they need to do while you are recuperating and make them understand it is their responsibility to get it done. I use to be one them nuts that vacumned the living room as many as three times a day because it had footprints on it. Now, my house is not as clean but its not filthy either. A little dusting would go a long ways right now,lol. But, remember all of this can be done by family and family members coming in to help.

Right now is time for you to chill the best you can and collect yourself. Of course you are scared, who wouldn't be, thats normal. But think about how much better will feel once you are past all of this. Then if you want to clean house once the dr says ok, then have it lol. But not before, ok? I would get my comfortable clothing items situated where I need them. Get lots of lotion or actually body cream is better in the dry months, its seems like surgery dries our skin out so bad. If you like reading, get a good book to read. I call it making my nest lol. Above all, once you are home, do as White Beard suggested, follow your drs instructions to the letter and do not venture off the beaten path. If you try to do things to o soon or do too much you will only knock yourself backwarrds in your recovery and you sure don't want that. Your recuperation time is just as important as the surgery itself. I know for a fact nurses are the worst ones when it comes to taking care of themselves, I think thats just because of the occupation, we will call it a occupational hazard, lol.

Keep us posted on how you are coming along. And start slowing down now so you will be rested up somewhat for the surgery. You will need every ounce of strength you need later. Susie


White Beard
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3699
   Posted 4/5/2009 4:06 PM (GMT -6)   
PaLady I am glad you addressed the pain med issue to anice.! anice your situation with your pain meds and your husband well you know how I feel by my other post! But that is a real concern! and you might really need them during your post-op days. I think PaLady is right, try and find some people that you can trust and have them help you with this problem. After you have healed and your back to normal you can address the problem further, but for now you have to deal with what you have available and quickly!
again Good Luck to You!

White Beard

I'm Retired USAF, went back to school and became an RN, and now am on ful disalbility!

Degenerative Disc (affecting mostly the thorasic disc but all levels involved), C6/7 laminectomy/diskectomy& fusion, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!)

Medications: Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 168
   Posted 4/5/2009 4:41 PM (GMT -6)   

I have been following the posts and agree with all of the help being offered. You will need your meds on a regular basis (uninterrupted) when you come home. Until you can deal with your husbands problem in the future, perhaps you could talk to your pharmacist and see if they could issue your prescription in smaller quantities and perhaps even have them delivered to your home every day or two. This puts the med control on someone outside your household for a while until you can deal with it effectively yourself. Even with delivery cost it might be worth it.

By the way, I think consumption of narcotics by someone other than the one they were prescribed for is a federal offense. Discuss the problem with the pharmacy and see if they can help you.

I wish you the best. I have been through 5 lamanectomies, 4 levels of fusion, failed instrumentation removal and I have to say that the lamanectomy is probably the easiest to get through. I don't mean to make light of it in any way but the recovery times are shorter and you should be back on your feet quickly. Good luck!

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