Happy Thanksgiving everyone! It is so hard to believe that this year is almost over with and we will be planning our New Year’s resolution. I have always tried to live a life of gratitude throughout the year and not just in the month of November or Thanksgiving day. I dedicated this year to improving my health. Today, I wanted to share with you 9 things that I am thankful for this year.
Thankful That My Surgery was Successful
I read so many horror stories over the years about the surgery (L5-S1 spinal fusion) that I needed to fix my back problems. It made me scared to have it done so I put it off for as long as possible. Last year I knew it was time to get it done. My doctor warned me that it was a super painful surgery and that he couldn’t guarantee that I would be completely pain-free. I don’t regret having the surgery done. At times, I wish that I didn’t put it off for so long even if the outcome was the same. I was pain-free for only a short period, and the pain slowly returned.
I have been to several doctors to determine why I am still having problems in my low back and hips. Both of the doctors that I have seen so far can’t tell me why I am still having pain. The pain starts in my low back and radiates to my hips/inner thighs. They feel that I have some permanent nerve damage, potential problems with my facet joints, or soft tissue damage. My problems all started from a car accident that happened over 16 years ago. There are a few other treatment options available but it will probably be next year before I can get things scheduled.
After my back surgery, I was afraid to go to physical therapy because in the past it wasn’t helpful. The day that I walked into the see the physical therapist for the first time, I wasn’t able to do very much at all and was still dependent on wearing my back brace. I had an excellent physical therapist that pushed me and made me stronger.
I am super thankful that I have my health despite dealing with chronic pain, rheumatoid arthritis, and fibromyalgia. Even though my health isn’t perfect, I know that things could be so much worse. I have a great team of doctors who work together to try their best to keep my symptoms under control as much as possible. On the bad days, I sometimes question why I was picked to have such complicated health problems. But then I remember that I can try to help others along the way.
Weight Loss Victories
It has been a while since I have written about my weight loss journey. Things have been complicated around here, but they should be settling down soon so that I can refocus on my weight loss. Since February, I have lost a total of 40 lbs. It hasn’t been an easy journey. When I look back, I have come a long way.
Family is the Best
I have the best family. They love me and support me despite all of my complicated health problems. When I am struggling, they step in to help with the things that need to be done around the house.
I Got to See my Daughter Graduate
My daughter graduated from high school in early June. I was able to see her walk across the stage. She was born deaf and got her cochlear implants at age four. This put her a bit behind in her verbal and expressive language compared to other 4-year-olds. After she got her implants, she was able to learn how to speak and could hear everything going on around her. Despite her late start, I am amazed by her strong desire to learn and face the challenges that come along with being hearing impaired.
Man’s Best Friend
My dogs are instrumental in helping me cope with my chronic pain. Buddy, the Yorkie, usually lays beside me during the daytime and keeps me company. Buddy loves to lick me and demand attention when he knows that I am hurting.
Treatment Options for Rheumatoid Arthritis
I am so thankful that my rheumatologist was able to catch my rheumatoid arthritis early so that I could start treatment immediately before there was significate damage caused to my joints. Rheumatoid arthritis can cause significant joint damage, especially to the smaller joints ie fingers. Doctors don’t know what triggers it and I hope that one day there is enough research to help doctors figure it out so that other people can get treatment for it sooner.
The readers of Up Run for Life are very valuable to me, and I am thankful for each one of you. Up Run for Life blog was started when I snatched up the URL at an online auction so that I wouldn’t have to start from complete scratch since things have changed in the blogging world over the last several years. My ultimate goal is to continue to bring you valuable and useful content. Writing for me is a creative outlet that I enjoy and it helps me take the focus off my health problems.
I could go on and on about the things that I am thankful for this year. However, I think that you would get bored reading my long list. I will spare you the rest of my list. 🙂
I hope that you have a Happy Thanksgiving and that you can also take a moment to reflect on the things that you are thankful for over the last year.