If you've been following my blog, you've probably noticed there hasn't been much to "follow" lately. That's because for the past 2.5 months, I have been dealing with an extremely debilitating health issue: sciatic nerve pain. Anyone who has ever had this condition already knows how painful and life-altering it can be. But more than the physical limitations causes, it also challenges you mentally, emotionally and even spiritually. Sciatic nerve pain can come on suddenly and without warning, cause months of agonizing pain and then leave just as mysteriously as it came, leaving behind months and even years of physical AND emotional damage. Yet, the condition is so common that you'd be hard pressed to find someone who HASN'T struggled with it.
During my journey through sciatic nerve pain, I researched many websites in search of not only health information and answers to my own questions, but support from others who had been through the same thing. It was in my research that I found hundreds of sciatic nerve pains sufferers who were desperate for information, answers and emotional support -just like me. It was then that I decided to journal my experience and eventually share it with others who may be facing the same debilitating condition. It is my hope that through sharing my experience, it will help someone else who may also be looking for answers and support.
Over the next series of blogs, you will read my raw, unedited account of my journey through sciatic nerve pain. With the exception of the first one, the entries are not dated, yet chronicled by the passage of days or weeks. I have decided NOT to edit any of my journal in order to present my experience just as I was living it. If you have any questions about any part of my journal, please feel free to post comments or questions and I will be more than happy to answer as completely and honestly as I can.
DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor or other health care provider, and the information presented in the following series of blogs is not intended to diagnose or treat sciatic nerve pain or any other health related health condition.
The first journal entry starts below...
A Twinge Turned to Terror- Part 1
March 19, 2018
It’s been one week ago today that a simple “twinge” in my back turned into a sharp, searing pain that literally knocked me to my knees and sent my body into a vicious cycle of tremendous physical, emotional and mental agony. It didn’t take long for me to realize I was suffering from a condition commonly known as sciatica nerve pain. But what I didn’t realize is how such a “common” condition, could turn my life upside down in just a matter of a few short hours and make everyday, ordinary tasks literally impossible to perform. For anyone who’s ever experienced sciatica, you know exactly what I’m talking about. And if you haven’t ever experienced it, I hope you NEVER do, as I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy!
I’m still not sure just WHEN it happened. Or even HOW. The last “normal” thing I remember doing is something I do every day - fixing my bed. But as I bent down to retrieve a pillow from the floor, I felt an innocent little “twinge” go up my spine. Nothing really “painful”, just noticeable. After about an hour, I noticed a little soreness in my lower back, so I took an Aleve, and went on about my normal routine the rest of the day,with no other real side effects. Until a few hours later. I had been sitting in my chair doing some jewelry crafting and went to get up. And THAT’S when it HIT me. The twinge that had spoke so softly earlier in the day was now growling like an angry bear through the tender nerves that ran from my lower back and down into my right leg. I hobbled to the living room where my husband was, barely able to straighten my now painfully crooked spine. Hunched over like a hundred year old woman, and moving at a snail’s pace, my lower back and leg seethed with more pain than I ever thought imaginable.
My husband helped me to the couch, then quickly brought me a couple of ibuprofen, which I was sure would ease the pain and give me lasting relief. But sciatica doesn’t work that way. It’s more like a rude, uninvited guest - eager to stay and in no hurry to leave! (In fact, my obnoxious guest has been here eight days already, and shows NO sign of going ANYWHERE!)
After a restless night, gingerly tossing and turning to find a comfortable sleeping position, I awoke the next morning expecting to be blessed with an “overnight miracle”, and have my “normal” body back. Instead, I was even WORSE off than the night before. The whole day I spent scrunched up in my chaise chair with my knees rammed into my chest. It was the only position that seemed to bring any short term relief. I continued to take ibuprofen throughout the day and napped when possible. Later than night, screaming and crying for ANY kind of relief from the unrelenting pain that was now ripping up and down my right leg, I begged my husband to call SOMEONE and get some stronger pain meds. Fortunately for me, but not for him, my father-in-law had been through the SAME misfortune a year earlier, but was unable to take the strong medication the doctor had prescribed for him, and was glad to send them my way. Likewise, my Mom who was afflicted with muscle spasms a few months earlier, also had meds she thought might help. Finally armed with some potent weapons to counter-attack my ruthless attacker, I looked forward to a less painful and more restful evening - SURE relief would now come quickly. Only I was painfully WRONG - AGAIN! Part 2 coming soon....