June was eye month – six appointments, two surgeries, no more cataracts. Woohoo! My second eye is tired and showing flickering light, but I understand this is normal, or can be, and that healing is different for the two eyes. It really is a miracle to be be able to see so clearly in what seems to be no time at all.
July is shaping up to be spine month. I had my second lumbar MRI last week, full of ominous words like “severe,” “bulging,” “degenerative,” and even “scoliosis.” Today I saw my regular pain doctor, who has helped me so much over the last two years with injections, pain meds, and neurotomies. He read the report and said, “There’s more bad than good here, but we treat the patient, not the MRI.” He thinks he can help with some of the L5 level issues, but the falling and foot drop that I’m experiencing (did I mention that I fell again last Friday? yeah, fun times continue) are signs that surgery is in my future.
I have a referral in the works to a board certified neurosurgeon who I’ve checked out and who seems to be highly regarded by people I highly regard. We’re just waiting for insurance – oh, insurance! – to approve the referral. I want to research more of those scary words from the MRI report and to compare it with the report from an earlier MRI done two years ago. Because, yeah, I’m a research nerd and I like to understand what I’m facing.
I’m finding that I’m limiting my activities now. Heat is part of that, but I’m also really afraid of walking much on uneven surfaces. I went to the gym today and worked on the NuStep (my favorite machine) and did some back extensions to help stretch out the back. And I got a pedicure after the doctor’s appointment – but couldn’t tell if she was working on the right foot unless I looked, because I can’t feel anything there. The toes do look better, though, and after months of caring for my feet myself, it’s a relief to have someone else do it for a change.
I have a few clean-up projects to work on, including a serious weeding of my fashion jewelry, most of which I don’t wear anymore, and some reorganization of papers in the den. And there are a few pieces of furniture that may have outlived their usefulness to me, so I need to think about them as well. I’m also thinking about whether to paint the inside of the house, which isn’t essential but might be nice to do. The bathrooms and kitchen were already done 2 years ago with the renovation, but the living/dining rooms and bedrooms could use some refreshing.
But big stuff needs to wait until we know what’s up with the spine and what steps need to be taken to repair the damage of those big words. Just keeping my fingers crossed that this new doctor doesn’t think my BMI level is too high for surgery. That happened 2 years ago, right after they told me they were surprised to see I wasn’t in a wheelchair based on my films. Yeah. Crappy back, too fat to do anything about it. Hello, nice to meet you too. Fingers crossed this time.