Barbie Perkins-Cooper, Author

Living Life in the Country As A Writer, Photographer

Dearest Readers:

Good morning, or perhaps I should also say, Good afternoon! If you are a regular fan of my blog, you might remember during the morning of our move from suburbia to the country — December 23, 2019 — I fell off a three step ladder, fracturing my back. The pain I’ve endured is truly indescribable! At times, my back pain felt as if a train was rushing along the left side of my spine in such a hurry I could scream. Another description would be imagine an electrical fire inside your body, storms of electricity firing away, creating the most excruciating burning pain you could ever imagine. Labor pain is just a cramp compared to back fractures. Finally, on December 27, I asked Phil to please take me to ER or Doctor’s Care.

At Doctor’s Care, x-rays were taken. The x-ray tech wanted me to twist and turn into positions I felt were almost impossible to tolerate. I moaned and groaned, and prayed. Somehow I knew my back was seriously injured. When the physicians assistant entered the exam room, she informed me I had a compression fracture of the Lumbar, L-1. She encouraged me to rest and not lift anything heavy. (She was too late. While moving, I carried heavy boxes while screaming in pain.) She referred me to a spine specialist.

For a couple of weeks, I rested on the couch. Lumbar pillows tucked beside the aching back helped a bit. Still, the pain was so unbearable, when Phil was at work, I cried. Sometimes like a baby. I tried to unpack, attempting to bend down. Every time, I screamed in pain. I still have many boxes to unpack. All. In. Time.

In January, 2020, I went to a spinal surgeon. All he wanted to discuss was spinal surgery. I had researched spinal surgery of L-1. The information I read on Web MD, and Mayo Clinic horrified me. I refused to discuss or schedule spinal surgery. The surgeon referred me to a back brace specialist.

Later that afternoon, I was fitted for a back brace. Tightly hugging my broken spine, the pain decreased just a bit. I was prescribed Ibuprofen, when needed. The specialist said I would need to wear the back brace every day for at least three months.

Today is June 18, 2020. In five days, my compression fracture will be a six-month recovery period. On that date, I have scheduled a bone density test. Still, I am having pain; however, I am getting physical therapy now. I must say, it appears to be working!

Yesterday at PT, I decided to put my back to the test. I rode a stationary exercise bike for 10 minutes as fast as my legs would allow. Yes, it hurt. I’m determined to work this pain away! For one hour, my back was massaged, twisted into exercises including legs, sides and back. Over this time frame my back felt better. The knots located by L-1 disappeared!

Moments ago, I made an appointment for my bone density test. I remember having a bone density test in 2016. Much to my surprise, the hospitals, imaging specialists have no records of such a test. I remember going to Roper St. Francis for this test, although it appears my records have disappeared. If you are reading this, please note – when and if you have any medical tests, please get a copy of it for your records! A big mistake on my part.

Today, the back feels better. Later, I shall get on my stationary exercise bike for at least ten minutes! I must keep this compression fracture exercised so I will not ‘need surgery.’

Due to this injury, I am ever-so-slowly learning to ask others to help me. I’ve always been stubborn. Head strong. Hard headed. INDEPENDENT. All of those describe me! It hurts my dignity to ask for help, but —!

More later, Readers. Have a great day and please stay safe. As for me, I shall NEVER step onto a ladder again. EVER! When I need something I cannot reach, I will call my husband to get it. Yes, he is short too, although he knows how to stay balanced on a step ladder. Obviously, I do not. Silly. Dangerous. Clumsy. Accident Prone. Yes. That is Me!

Please stay safe. Healthy. And remember to wash your hands ALL THE TIME. When in public wear a mask. I have two masks now. Still looking for a mask that is stylish and has a bit of bling!

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