Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Life is hard sometimes

I'll try not to make this too depressing, but I'm so bored right now that I don't know what else to do. Before I get into my present situation, here's a little back story to put it all into context:

When I was about 11 or 12 years old, I developed back problems. No one has ever been able to determine the cause of them. I certainly don't recall ever doing anything to injure my back, and neither do my parents. The only possible cause was something I may have done to it while studying martial arts, but once again, I don't remember a specific event that triggered it. I've seen many doctors, and after getting an MRI done, it was shown that I have two herniated discs in my lower back. I've tried many different treatments over the years, and not a single one has helped. These herniated discs cause a constant pain that is only relieved when I'm laying down.



In the beginning, it wasn't all that bad. It hurt all the time, but I could still live a pretty normal life. I would occasionally have flare-ups that required me to rest it here and there, but it was more of an inconvenience than anything. It did make it very hard for me to exercise, and I had to quit martial arts because it was too painful to continue. The lack of exercise resulted in my weight fluctuating a lot during my teenage years.

As time went on, it got worse and worse. By the time I was in college, it was very difficult for me to sit up. I could walk okay, but sitting upright was very painful. Standing still also caused me pain, and it became difficult for me to attend any events that require a person to stand still in long lines and such. Whenever I went to see movies, I would have to lean against the person next to me (usually my mom or my then-boyfriend) because I wasn't able to sit up. In school, I had to slump down in my chair and lean back as far as I could, and it usually didn't help much. I spent a lot of time in my classes doing nothing besides groaning in pain. After my classes, I usually just went back to my dorm room and laid down for the rest of the day. A good majority of my time was spent laying in bed.

At one point, I had a series of epidurals injected into my back. They completely removed my pain for a short time, and it was incredible. With the freedom to move without pain, I worked very hard to shed my excess weight and get myself into shape. It was a success, and I managed to get nice and thin before the pain returned. I've been in good shape ever since. However, once the pain came back, my life returned exactly to the way it was before.

When I was 19, I moved to another city in order to attend a different college. Right around the time I moved, my back miraculously stopped hurting! It happened out of nowhere, with no explanation whatsoever. For the first time in my adult life, I could live like a completely normal, healthy person. It was absolutely amazing. I loved the freedom I had, to do anything without fear of needing to nurse my sore back. There was a fear in the back of my mind that the pain would return some day, though. I expected it to happen when I was older, but after two and a half amazing years, the dreaded day arrived.

That day was three days ago. On Sunday, the 24th of October, 2010, I woke up with the familiar pain in my back once again. Just as it went away, it returned out of nowhere. I don't remember doing anything to strain it. It's just there. When I first woke up that morning, the pain wasn't too bad. It was annoying, but I figured I had just slept on it weird and it would go away. It didn't. As the day continued, the pain increased more and more. By the time I got home from work, I could barely walk. I stumbled around my apartment, wondering what on earth had made this happen again.

I got myself set up in my bed once again, the familiar place I used to spend most of my free time. I've been spending as much time as possible laying in either my bed or on the floor. I'm on the floor at the moment. It's been only three days, and I can already barely take any more of this constant laying down. I want so badly to get in my car and drive somewhere, but it's too painful to drive. I'm hoping and praying with everything I have that this isn't the end, that this is only temporary and I'll have my freedom back again soon. Realistically thinking, though, I doubt it will happen.

Before this happened, I was making plans to move into my own apartment very soon. I already have the place picked out, and I was hoping to move in the next couple months. If this back problem has returned permanently, though, then that is no longer an option for me. I'm unable to work and support myself when I'm like this. I'm thinking that I'll probably have to move back in with my parents. With them, I'll have more of a life than I could possibly have anywhere else. I'm going to give it a few more days, and if there's no improvement, then I'll most likely be putting in my two weeks notice at work.

I'm so very thankful for the last two and a half years of my life. It was an incredible experience, and I'll never forget it. Despite how depressing this blog entry sounds, I'm not unhappy right now. I just felt like sharing my story. It's nearly impossible for anything to bring down my spirit. No matter what ends up happening to me, I'll be okay.

25 comments:

  1. I really feel for you Jonna, and I pray that the pain will go away too. Your story left me feeling a little emotional, which is pretty rare heh.. What makes me feel like this is that your spirit can't be crushed even with this experience. I hope you get better <3.

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  2. wow, I wouldn't have seen that coming, your always really bubbly and happy on vids and such that I could never imagine such a back story, this might sound a little cliché but I hope you get better soon :)

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  3. Knowing modern science they will come up with something, I mean they're going to have a name for someone who is addicted to Youtube/Wikipedia in a year or two. Hope you feel better.

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  4. as austin said, "October is full of fail"

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  5. anyway hope u feel better jonna! were prayn 4 u!

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  6. Aw, that really sucks. :( It may not get you down, but I feel really sad to hear about that. I hope it gets better soon. And if/when it does, I hope it stays good and you can live a relatively pain-free life.

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  7. I read this and then jumped to wikipedia. According to that, a disk can herniate from the slightest action, as a result of the protection of its protective outer layer. Bending to pick up a pencil, picking something up while crouching, or other unmemorable actions can lead to full on disk herniation. Based on the lower two disks being affected, I'd say you were jumping around, ducking down, or repeating some activity that wore the tissue down. At some point, some mundane activity probably made the disks become completely herniated. If the pain died down, another simple action might trigger it entirely by chance. I'd recommend some online research, as medicine has come a long way in the past few years. You could likely find sone specialist or other who could help.

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  8. Also, I looked at the source for one part of the article. This may be of interest.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12715286

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  9. I hope that in the very very near future, (today, if possible), the pain disappears and for good too! ><''''

    Juvenile wish, I know... but I really really do wish for it to happen. You're one of the nicest and bubbliest persons on the Net that I know and it's just not fair for this to plague one of my favourite persons around. Do get well soon!

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  10. I have to say, that is a really awesome X-ray. Get well now Jonna!!!

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  11. I know this problem. My grandma had that three years ago and she had a therapy in a nearby hospital. It worked as well and the pain's gone after a few month. I could ask her what it exactly was... Hopefully it will help you.

    I wish you the best... Don't give up, you can handle that!

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  12. Sorry to hear about your back issues your having :(, i hope it goes away for you soon so you can continue to enjoy life without the pain.

    I have a slight case of Scoliosis and a hair line fracture in my spine which hurts like hell every so often and like you say it can be very debilitating when it rears its head, so i send best wishes and hope this pain your having leaves you again soon and you start feeling better :)

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  13. I feel very sorry for you :(, i really hope you will find a specialist or that the pain will as fast disappear as it came. October is really full of fail. But in 5 days its over and hopefully your pain too :)

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  14. I know what it's like to deal with physical pain that incapacitates you. I've had a congenital problem with my hips my whole life, but it didn't really come to a head until I was 18. My hip would pop and pretty much drop me to the ground and I could do nothing but lay in bed for the next day or two. Within a couple months, I had to resort to walking with a cane to go anywhere, and in the meantime I was seeing surgeon after surgeon trying to figure out why my hip was so bad but no one could figure it out what was wrong. I had X-ray after X-ray and a number of MRIs, a couple of which required special dye to be injected into the hip itself through a long and drawn out process which made me as sick as can be the first few times.

    Ultimately, we had even gone to the Mayo clinic where the doctor wanted me to have Cortisone injections for a couple years until my hip had to be replaced. This was a rather frightening prospect, especially as I was only 19 at this time.

    We were fortunate enough to be referred to a surgeon by another doctor who was a patient in my mom's dental office, who she had been talking to about the hip issue. It was the day before the first injection and he told us to cancel and got us right in to see this surgeon. Within the month, I was having a relatively new arthroscopic procedure done on my hip, mostly to diagnose the problem but the doctor was confident he knew what was happening and would be able to fix it, which he did.

    We ended up finding out that the ball of my hip was too big for the socket, and had been tearing away the cartilage over time until it got really bad. The reason diagnosis took so long is because on the X-rays and MRIs, both hips looked the same and it was unclear why the one hip would be bad. As expected, my other hip went bad about 2 years later and although we knew what to do, it's still a long waiting game that's annoying. I was unable to work and was only doing school, which I would miss fairly often because of my hip, especially when it'd pop.

    It's now been almost a year since the last procedure. I have the occasional flareup every once in a while and I probably will need another procedure done a little while down the road, probably even a full replacement. I may not know exactly what you're going through, but I know what pain is like in that way. I've learned that we can separate the physical pain from emotion and our spirits can overcome. My personal mechanism for coping was humor. I took a creative writing class at my college and our final was to write a humor piece, so I wrote about this whole experience.

    I know you'll get through this. In the past, I was never one to say this, but...things get better. I can promise you that things will get better. Stay positive and don't let it win. I wish you the best and hope you will get better soon.

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  15. It all gon be k.
    *pats on back, making it worse*
    Oh crap! Sorry...

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  16. Can't you get something prescribed for the pain? If this pain is disrupting your life this much then I think that's a good reason to take something for it.

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  17. Yeah...I was very depressed after reading this...Some people I know have had this problem, and it's corrected itself fairly quickly. I myself haven't experienced it, so all I can really do is wish you well...I'd donate, but I am of the unemployed persuasion. Get better soon!

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  18. That sucks bad. Why don't you see a back specialist? (Though you may have already). I have a ton of back problems too.

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  19. hi! i'm miguel and i'm from peru, there are some naturals medicines here in peru that could help you, i don't know if you are interested in but... i want to help with something. if i go to orlando again, i will give you some of them =D, don't worry you have your friends and family, that is the most important thing that human could have. life is hard sometimes, but heart will be alive if your hope is high , i'll pray for you, take care of yourself =)

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  20. that really sucks butt. I hope you are able to find treatment for it, you never know within the past couple of years a treatment or drug may have been developed. I hope you get better, and if you don't I'll be super sad and cry.

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  21. Your story really makes me thankful for the little things you take for granted. Don't let it get you down though. There is a lot of power in positive thinking. You'll be better in no time.

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  22. Damn this sucks :( I feel so sorry for you... Meh now I'm sad :( I really hope the pain goes away forever... Take care of yourself!

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  23. http://www.awmi.net/extra/healing/niki

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  24. It's nice to have people in this world who are never perturbed by anything. You truly are The Pollyanna of the Kilplix videos.

    I hope everything gets better for you.

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  25. I think I can relate to your experience with back problems. Let me just say, I've definitely had my share of constant visits to the doctor, back pains, and sacrifices of the things I loved to do that I am incapable of doing today. It's hard, I know.

    Keep your head up :) Going through experiences like this makes you stronger than ever.

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