In my last post, I shared that my husband was going to have outpatient back surgery. I never thought “outpatient” and “back surgery” would go together, but they do.
Greg’s surgery was successful. “No surprises,” according to the neurosurgeon. We were at the surgery center from 7:30 am to 6 pm. Unfortunately, he had nausea. (I wonder if it had anything to do with the 17 drugs they put into his system during and after the procedure). The nausea took a few hours to get under control, and they wouldn’t let him leave until he had urinated.
I never thought I’d be so happy to hear my husband pissing.
They also had him up and walking around before we left, and we learned how he needs to move in order to avoid bending or twisting. He has a six-inch-long incision that I gently wash twice a day.
He has his pain medications which he only takes at night. He’s already figured out how to use a long-arm gripper to get his clothes on, but I help him most of the time.
He’s becoming a bit more active every day. Day 1, he walked around inside the house. Day 2, we walked outside and down our street about halfway and then back. Day 3 (today), we walked outside, up our hill, back down and a little past our house before turning back.
He has tingling in his legs now and says he can feel the ground under his feet now.
This is very hard to write. You see, the surgery was to correct severe spinal stenosis: bone growth on his spinal column was squeezing his nerves, cutting off communication from his brain to his lower body. Two neurologists told him that without the procedure, he would eventually become incontinent and likely lose the use of his legs.
We’ve known for some time that something was wrong. Over the last couple of years, he lost muscle mass in his calves, and his gait was becoming increasingly wobbly. We didn’t know how bad it could become. Worse, we didn’t know how bad his condition already was. The story of how he finally got the medical attention he needed is a tale for another day.
For now, my husband is home, and he’s getting better every day.
This is will be my last blog post for a long while. One, I’m spending more time doting on my husband as well as doing things that he can’t do (like maintain the bird feeders, that sort of thing). Two, I’m taking an online environmental writing workshop through Orion Magazine with Scott Russell Sanders. The workshop started the day after my husband’s surgery. (Trust me, we didn’t plan it that way.) The workshop is wonderful, but I’m struggling to find the time to focus. So, no more blog posts until either my workshop is over (mid-July) or I get a grip on my time. I’ll leave it to you all to guess which will likely come first.
Stay safe, well, and happy. Hug a loved one as often as you can. (In my husband’s case, the hugs are very gentle.)
Marie A Bailey
Writer, blogger, knitter, cat lover, and introvert.