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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/10/2009 1:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi everyone. I am 50 yrears old and in the past 8 years have had 16 surgeries. A work accident left me with 3 lumbar disk herniations, now fused, a torn bladder, now fixed and 2 rotator cuff tears, fixed.At the tail end of this I found I had stage 3 breast cancer and went through a multitude of surgeries for that, now recovered. (yay!!!) Since then I have had shoulder surgery twice, (same shoulder) for complete separation of rotator cuff, torn librum and biceps. I fear I have torn it again because it causes me great pain with too much usage. Now I know that a body breaks down with age, but jeeeze! Anyway, I have nerve damage in my hands and feet and they swell up every am and pm, in the am. I can work it out with activities. It seems that as long as I am busy busy busy, they are fine. Same thing with my back and the accompaning sciatica. I have to stay busy, to stop and sit through a movie causes a lot of pain in my back and hands and feet. But I have to really know how to pace myself and not over due anything because the payment for that is harsh. I am happy to say, that I do NOT rely on anything stronger than aleve and ice packs. I really swear by the ice!!! Needless to say, my house and yard are immaculate. Sadly though, I now find myself alone in my world because my pain keeps me from being able to enjoy life and make friends. I moved to Illinois when I had cancer because I thought I was dying and wanted to be near my daughter. But I can't rely on her for companionship, she has her own life. I have tried making friends here, but my limitations invariably get in the way and they fizzle out. I live alone with my dogs and have my grandson over one night a week. He is 4, and one night is about my limit with such a busy child. Just the time it took me to type this out has my back hurting from sitting. I guess I am kind of looking around, I know I am not the only one dealing with so much. I wondered how others manage to meet and make and maintain friends in a life with chronic pain. I do not mind the empathizing with someone else in then same shoes, but I must keep an upbeat attitude to survive and will not permit myself to drop into a pit of self pity, but it does get lonely and I am tired of laughing at my own jokes.
Well, I must say, that felt good, to unload. Thanks for reading this. Lisa

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 9/10/2009 2:43 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi, Lisa,
Welcome to the Chronic Pain forum of Healing Well. You sure have been through the mill! Yet your spirit comes through in your post - the spirit of a survivor in many ways!

I have found the support this site offers to be a godsend. I also live alone, and know what you're talking about in terms of isolation. I think that happens with many of us, and if you're not married or living with someone it's really a challenge to even find people to talk to! I do know coming here has helped me enormously.

Unloading, as you say, can feel good. And we also have fun with some quirky threads from time to time. Feel free to join in anywhere. And there's a chat on Thursday nights (there's a thread with more info. about how to get to the chat room).

It's late and I'm kind of rambling, but did want to say hello, and welcome!


Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 1235
   Posted 9/10/2009 6:41 AM (GMT -6)   
Have you tried any of the local Senior programs? I know that our Recreation Department has many programs, from traveling to various locales to daily shared meals, dancing programs, knitting , crafting, just about anything that you can think of to do, they are doing it.
In fact, they are now starting a similar program for singles, which is very popular amongst all ages.
Welcome to our little group. I'm sure that you will find many of us here to talk to. I read every day but posting kind of depends on how long I can manage to sit for.
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.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 71
   Posted 9/10/2009 8:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello and welcome to the forum, pull up a couch and lay awhile : )


Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9664
   Posted 9/10/2009 8:25 AM (GMT -6)   
Nice to meet you...can you get to church? sometimes they have singles groups, at least our's does here...
I also like to do needlework, when I can and have a group on thursdays that I can go to, every once in awhile...
Sometimes colleges offers painting classess or hobby class...
just a few ideas...
good luck to you...
lots and lots of soft hugz...
* Asthma, Allergies, Osteoarthritis, Spinal Stenosis, Degenative Disc, Fibromyalgia, Gerd,
Enlarged Pituitary Gland, Sjogren's and Ocular Migraines


Mrs. Dani
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 2787
   Posted 9/10/2009 10:40 AM (GMT -6)   
   Dear Lisa,
     Good morning! My name is Dani. I am very glad to meet you. I think you will find many things in common with the folks here at Healing Well Community. I do not know about the others? But literally, the only ones who truly understand are the folks here. Well,  and medical professionals... But, not in the same way I don't think.
     I am sorry to hear all you have had to go through. I simply cannot imagine. But!! I do understand about your body needing to stay "busy". When I stop, it hurts.  Sometimes it feels like trying to keep it down to "moderate pain with severe spikes" is the best I can achieve.  Certianly better then the Level 10 express... but!! It sure wears on the heart sometimes. Not physically, emotionally.. Im sure you know what I am tryin to say!
     In anycase, I am so glad you came to join us. Every Thursday night is Chat night for Chronic Pain forum. If you can? Maybe you can come and hang out with us? :-)
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,  
And sorry I could not travel both  
And be one traveler, long I stood

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9289
   Posted 9/10/2009 11:51 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome Lisa!!

We've thrilled you've joined the family! It's sad that we all need to be here but at least we have each other and we totally understand what our forum family members go through.

I have a couple of thoughts/ideas after reading your story. First, I'm so sorry that your body isn't behaving itself...mine isn't either. I have fibromyalgia, take insulin several times a day, deal with PTSD, UC, a rare form of dermatitis, arthritis in hands and spine, and a few assorted other side So, I do understand, like the others, what you're talking about. But the first thought I had was... what kind of medical care do you have? I assume you're on insurance. (If not please let us know as we have lots of great resources for those who aren't.) But what I mean is are you satisfied that they have the correct diagnosis for where you pain is originating? I would first make sure that is covered.

And the other thing that jumped out at me was something I can identify with. You said " I am happy to say, that I do NOT rely on anything stronger than aleve and ice packs. I really swear by the ice!!!" That is wonderful and we have people on the forum who do the same. In fact for most of my life I would boast that I only took a Tylenol maybe once a year. Then when I hit 40 my body started to slowly crumble and by the time I hit 50 it has really picked up But I still would manage with my ice packs, heat packs, and/or Tylenol. But with each successive trip to my doc the pain level was getting worse and worse. He tried several things, like physical therapy (which was the worst thing for the fibromyalgia), medication for neuropathy, anti-inflamitories, ...we tried everything that was reasonable. My pain level by this time was getting unbearable and I didn't have much quality to my life. It was then he offered something stronger for pain. I was not only shook by the thought but was embarrassed that I had to rely on something "stronger". I had to give it a lot of thought and doc and I had several conversation about it. I finally tried a narcotic pain reliever and OM Gosh! what a difference it made in my life. I was able to do some things I had given up. It didn't take away all of the pain...nothing does unless it knocks you out...but it brought it down to a tolerable level. That was many years ago and I am still on narcotic pain medication.

Yes, I hate it and don't tell anyone about it unless they need to know. I used to have problems with the fact that I was so proud of not needing any 'pills'. But you know what I learned the hard way... I would rather have some quality to my life than keep feeding my pride! So doc and I made a deal...I would do what I can to help control my pain like pacing myself (which I'm not too good at), rest often ( and try to live a full and happy life. And he would, within reason, try to balance my pain medications to keep the pain level low enough so I CAN have a quality life.

Lisa, give some thought to the idea of using something besides Aleve for your pain. I'm not trying to push pills, but consider how long you want to be proud of your beautiful house and yard and have no friends to enjoy it with you because you are at home with ice packs on. It was a VERY hard 'pill' for me to swallow when I gave in and tried, but it gave me my life back. I would love for you to have a full life too.

Either way I am happy you're here. Join our Koffee Klatches we have daily. It's a bit of fun each day where the one rule using the 'P' (pain) And on Thursday evenings, tonight in fact, we have live chats in the Chronic Pain chat room. There is always a post on Thursdays as a reminder with directions on how to get to the chat rooms. Hope you will join us. We all were newbies at one time but no matter how long you've been here you are always a friend whom we care about.


ps...always feel free to email me if you'd like............
Play fair. Don't hit people. Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
~Robert Fulghum

(\o/)Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums

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