I’ve written thrice before (Post 1, Post 2, Post 3) about having been diagnosed a year and a half ago with a herniated disc (that’s an x-ray of my actual spine in the photo here, showing that my L5 vertebra has slipped forward and is making bone-to-bone contact with my sacrum), and I bring it up today partly as an excuse for the slowdown in new content here at Fish & Bicycles.
During my recent vacation, I noticed that my lower back was becoming increasingly stiff as the days passed. I wasn’t alarmed initially, given how much physical activity we engaged in — hiking, often carrying a heavy pack, boulder scrambling, jumping into cold rivers, sliding down a sandstone river bed on nothing but our butts, rafting down the Colorado River, and rock climbing — but toward the end of the trip it was getting increasingly difficult just to get in and out of our rental car.
Then, at our dinner on our last night there, I made a seemingly harmless twisting motion, reached for something that had fallen to the floor, and I experienced a piercing, sharp pain that took my breath away.
I made it through the rest of the trip without another pain incident, but this past Friday night I had one of the worst physical pain experiences of my life, and I would have ended up in the emergency room if my wife hadn’t found an old prescription of painkillers.
But painkillers only last so long, they make me feel all kinds of crappy, and so I’m back to getting seen by doctors and chiropractors, with physical therapy and massage therapy likely to follow.
All I want is to be pain-free. Stiffness and a need to stay off my bicycle for a while, that I can handle. Usually the rest works, but this time it’s not helping.
With all the bed rest I’ve had since Friday, you’d think there’d be more new posts here than ever. But, what really happens is that I’m too drowsy from the drugs or it’s too comfortable to be in any kind of position that would allow me to type, and so it will be for a while longer.
How long? I have no idea.