It’s been a while…
…Since my last blog. It’s been a real rollercoaster for me. I’m not writing this down to complain, on the contrary, I’m more tenacious than before. The last 8 months I’ve gone from a lot of pain to confused, confounded and back to reality. Yes, I know, that line is also confusing but let me try to explain. (July 16 –25 2016 we went on vacation to Norway with the MMRC (Miata MX-5 Roadster Club). Magnificent country, great roads, beautiful (ruff) nature. We really enjoyed that trip! 10 days on the road from Belgium thru Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and back via Germany to Belgium. So what’s the fuss all about?
On the 7th day, my back began to ache. On the 8th day, I couldn’t drive my car anymore because my left leg was feeling a bit numb. And on the 9th day, I was in constant pain and pain killers. Once we were back in Belgium we went to a doctor and he told me I had a hernia between L4 and L5 (lowest vertebrae) and I needed to go the hospital asap. But of course, the soonest date possible was almost 14 days later. Saturday I couldn’t hold my left leg still due to the pain. We went to the hospital to get some answers. After a long day and a lot of painkillers, they told me to stay because it was not normal that I still felt so much pain after the cocktail they gave me. That was enough to lay down a horse!
Checking in, waiting for a room, and finally getting intravenous therapy so they could give me the good stuff to get me calm again. August 4th I got an appointment to get an epidural injection (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epidural_steroid_injection) to fix the pain and the numb leg. They say that man are like baby’s when they feel pain. Could be, but I can take a lot. These days before the injection was like hell to me. Sleepless nights, many, due to the pain and the people in the same room snoring! After a few days, I was a wreck. Luckily after that stinging injection, the pain subsided and they released me from the hospital so I could recover at home. A lot of rest, painkillers, inflammatories and the love of my wife got me true. Still, it took 2 months before the pain went to an “acceptable” level and I could start to go to work again. Slowly, but I was back on track.
After 2 weeks I was thinking to do some work in my garage. Clean my MX-5, wax it to make it shine real nice so I could take it out again for a spin in the sun. Even our dog Lorion was happy about it. He was a puppy at the time (1 year) but a big one for his age, pure mussels. He was so excited that he jumped up to me. But he miscalculated and landed sideways on my knee. Result: torn and stretched ligaments, chipped a bone. Back to the doctor, back to the hospital for some X-rays, back to the doctor to get my leg in plaster for 6 weeks. He also wrote a Declaration of medical unfitness for 2 months and after that, I needed to come in for a checkup. Because of the complications (fluid in the knee by inflammation), he gave me 2 months extra.
February 20th. Finally, I could walk again and go back to work and do something else than keeping my leg up and rest. After a total of more than 6 months no longer sleeps, back to reality and set the alarm clock to wake up in the early morning. Of course the first days I needed to go true a lot of administration and emails to catch up again. A lot of procedures changed, new colleagues, new products and so on.
At work, I talked with the doctor from the Medical Department. They advised me to make an appointment with the ergonomics manager to check my desk and chair and discuss how to arrange my work/break times. Because 80% of my job is administration I need to get off my chair more. We agreed that I would go out for a walk 2 times a day with a minimum of 20 minutes each walk. I realise that I need to keep doing these walks every day because now after 7 months I still get warnings from my back if I don’t move enough. Once you had a hernia, it will always stay sensitive hey told me.
I never thought this would have such an impact on my mind and body. Keeping your mind at ease for all these months. Keep your body still for such a long time to make sure it heals well. And after the healing make sure you exercise well to get back in shape without forcing your body. Knowing that you get less income while the bills keep coming in is a stressful factor. And seeing and hearing that your friends are going out, going on a weekend trip etc. Maybe it sounds all simple but I can assure you that it’s really difficult to do. But then again, I’m not complaining, I’m trying to make a point here.
Keep in mind, there are worse things in life than this. I don’t have a deadly disease but it is difficult to keep your mind positive after that long time at home. Hopefully, this scenario doesn’t repeat itself anymore. I’m going to step out of my comfort zone and do some new stuff, making sure I get a new lifestyle, making sure to have enough budget/income to pay the bills no matter what.
Dream as if you live forever, live as if you’ll die today...