Friday, February 24, 2012

Get Up Offa That Thang

It’s been an interesting year thus far.

Long story short: A week before Christmas I had pain that radiated from the lower back through the hip to the leg, and eventually settled into the lower leg and foot. The pain was relentless, and sleep was scarce. I sought the help of a chiropractor whose treatments eventually moderated the pain. Then my foot dropped and became floppy (in technical medical parlance: not a good sign). I saw an orthopedist that ordered an MRI and soon thereafter advised that my back was, as we say in the South, a mess. So, in early February I underwent back surgery to relieve the compressed nerves. And the surgery went well.

Already on my schedule was a trip to Israel, the trip of a lifetime with the tour being guided by none other than my eldest son.

Yep, now I’m in a real mess.

So, less than a week after surgery I decided to start walking to strengthen the muscles in my leg. I really want to make this trip. My doc’s withholding judgment until my two-week follow up visit. The walking is physically taxing but tolerable, but the aftermath the next day hurts. I mean, really hurts. So I walk some more. And it hurts too.

I came upon a hawk in the road ahead on one of my walks, a gorgeous, golden, powerful creature, and he was busily studying something in the asphalt and paid me little heed. Finally he ascended to a nearby limb and waited for me to limp on by. He then looked down at me and made a calm, restrained noise as I passed, but since I don’t speak hawk, I greeted him in English, tipped my cap, and moved along.

It took a while, but I think the hawk was telling me, “No pain, no gain. You’re doing the right thing.”

Get up offa that thang!

At the follow up visit, my doc said he loved my motivation but didn’t want me to overdue things. After all, he had cut into the muscles in my lower back, and as you’ve already noticed they’ll bark loudly when stressed. My back is otherwise structurally sound, even though the feeling has not yet returned to my foot. He also said that if I felt like I can tolerate the trip, then he’d leave it up to me to make the decision.

So I walked some more. And the pain began to lessen. I knew my friend the hawk was right all along. And so was James Brown.

I’m going to Israel.


1 comment:

  1. Admiring how you manage to make fun of your excruciating pain. I wish I was that strong.