Imagine a Catchy Title…

screaming man

Dear Readers,

I struggled to even come up with a title for this post. It’s been a rough two weeks for me. I woke up in the day after Memorial Day and knew right away that I was in for it. Typically, I know how rough a day I’ll have within ten minutes of waking up. For a solid week, I battled horrific back spasms, neck spasms, and pain in my shoulders. It all stems from my injuries, so there is nothing new wrong with me. Friday, I had a toradol shot at the doctor that didn’t even make a dent in it. Then, on Monday, June 1st, I woke up feeling better. Back to normal, really. (My normal pain level is a 4 to 5/10). It was my son’s high school graduation and I made it down for the ceremony and was able to stand for the whole time (because I can’t sit on metal bleachers). I went to bed that night thinking that I’d put the latest flare up behind me. Tuesday started off good too. I was confident that I’d turned the corner.

And then, I reached for something and my entire back locked up again. And on Wednesday, my right knee decided to join the party and it locked up too. I live in constant pain, but I’m used to it being a certain level that I can manage. Protracted flare ups like this scare me because I don’t know if it is the new normal. If so, I don’t know how I can cope with it. It’s the kind of pain that forces everything else from your head. I’m used to working through pain. I’ve written two novels standing up because I can’t sit down, but right when I was wanting to start writing my third, this hit me and I haven’t been able to put so much as a single word on paper yet.

There’s nothing that can be done for me that hasn’t already been done or tried. The damage is too significant to my spine and more surgeries just risk serious complications with no chance of improvement. We all have our crosses to bear, and this one is mine. This is my reality. There is a point in my second and forthcoming novel Molly’s Song where our young heroine says, “The world is just a prison without walls.” I channeled my own frustration into her voice because that’s exactly what it feels like to be me. But that’s life. You hope in one hand and sh-t in another, and see which one fills up first.

L.H.

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