Monday, April 25, 2011

A Beautiful Day

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood.  A bunch of loud wild turkeys are gobble-gobbling near the creek out back.  (As long as the darn things don't get into our backyard, all is well.)  The dogs are playing nicely with their toys, the husband is working, and the sun is shining through scattered stacks of clouds.  The flora is going wild - budding, blooming, bursting with life.  Simply must get to King's Nursery, to buy mulch (is it too late for mulch?) some good dirt, and as many annuals as I can.  But first, the raking....

Can I get any raking done today?  I might try.  The leg pain isn't overwhelming (thankyou, Rx).  And the future looks good. 

Xray results (summary):
Radiographic findings of degenerative disk disease of the lumbar spine
MRI results (the only part you need to know):
At L4-5 and there is broad-based disc protrusion with moderate effacement of the lateral recesses bilaterally. There is no significant canal stenosis or neuroforaminal narrowing at this level, however.
At L3-4 there is apparent lateral disc protrusion with mild right neuroforaminal narrowing.

There is S-shaped curvature of the lumbar spine which is dextroconvex inferiorly.

Which means I have your average-American aging back.  Except for L3-4, which is a bit buggery right now - the "narrowing" point at which nerves are being pinched.  "Mild" (thanks to being on that Big Bad magic anti-inflammatory called Prednisone).  Jeez, I hate to think what Moderate or Severe narrowing must be like.  Holy cow!   My heart goes out to anyone who suffers back pain without medical intervention.  God bless you all - you must be as strong and  brave as the mountains are high. 

THE PLAN:  Physical Therapy.  A good exercise program - strengthening, fitness, building up protective muscles, ensuring flexibility, etc etc etc.   (Can you picture a recumbent exercise bike in my living room?)   The doc offered to give me an epidural shot this week, which would more quickly squelch the pain, but I'm thinking I might need a bit of pain (moderated with appropriate drugs, of course) to remind me not to over-do it.  "Over-doing it" during four days in Dixon was what got me here in the first place.  It's not that I'm scared of the shot.  Really.  Honest.  Ummmmmm.   Anyway.  She said I can always change my mind and get the shot.  Which I would do - in a flash - if I were going to World Team Try-outs.  (Like we're anywhere near.  Heh heh heh.)

Perhaps not this exact model, although I especially like the basket under the seat.  You never know when you might need something...

Our Easter Sunday was lovely.  Went to the Annual Boice BBQ.  Got to wear the old Easter bonnet again.  Hope you had a good one, too.


vici whisner said...

Dear Riff,

Your mom needs crate rest and some light exersize. No over doing it now. Make sure when she works on her PT that she is at a consistent speed and not for a tremendously long time. Every day add a little more so in 2-3 weeks her endurance builds.

Because she might get bored, I suggest that you find games for her to play that she won't have to move quickly but that will improve her "core" and balance. Maybe teach her a few tricks to keep her mind active (try hiding the tv remote, car keys, or her glasses - that will make her move slowly and use her brain rather than her body).

So Riff, I know that it sucks to have to rehab your handler, but you can always ask around to see if there are dogs that might loan you a handler to play with while Celeste it recovering.

Time will pass quickly and before you know it, you'll be running Celeste. Just keep in mind that when you start training you want to keep the sequences easy so she can take her time coming back.

Sending all my love,


Celeste said...

Dear Vici,
Thanks for the good advice! You rock. (wiggle, lick, ARF!) I've been trying to get her to PLAYPLAYPLAY with me but yeah, maybe she needs more slow time. (SI-I-I-IGH...) My BFF Wit let me run her handler a couple of times. I might get to run her today, too. (pant pant pant) In the meantime, I'm keeping a Close Eye on mom. I watch her constantly. I'll let you know how she's doing.
love you! (lick, wag)


Elf said...

I so empathize with your plight. Drugs are what got me through my really bad back pain--and about in the same area, inflamed/protruding/etc. disks. That and physical therapy. And the exercises that seemed to help me the most were the ones that helped to stretch out and relax my lower back and hip muscles. I think my hip muscles would tighten up (and sometimes still do), maybe in reaction to pain, and make it worse by putting too much pressure on my nerves and back.

Celeste said...

Thanks, ELF. Ever onward...!

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