FML. I could leave it at that, but I'm feeling the need to say a few things, so here it goes.
In a perfect world, my life could be good, great even, but it isn't. Growing up, I was taught all the right things, and tried my best to do most of them. Busted my tail to get an education (first in my family to go to college), stayed out of trouble, helped others, served my country and believed in what I was doing. What I didn't know was the wake-up call was coming, and when it did, none of those things mattered.
In the early 90's I experienced an injury that resulted in my first spinal surgery. We can fix you up good as new, they told me. Liars! That doctor wasn't even honest about what surgery he performed. I found out later that the laminectomy he claimed to do was actually a fusion, which, wait for it...failed, resulting in the need for another surgery when I lost the use of my arm due to nerve impingement and damage.
Taking the advice of a trusted friend, I got referred to a different doctor, highly recommended and paid for out of pocket to avoid another mistake by the military medical system, but he failed me, too. Broken and unable to do my job anymore, I retired from my military life and moved on to civilian life and the search for a competent doctor to clean up the mess.
Enter surgeon number three! Ten years and at least that many doctors later, this one is willing to try to make things right. All the same tests and procedures I had been through so many times before, we repeat. Just for clarity, I had a full time civilian career going since my retirement, but I was struggling to keep going.
During the pre-op workups, it was discovered that one of the previous docs had severed one of the two nerves needed to swallow. There's some good news! Doc three and the ENT explained that the other one could be damaged during this surgery and I could lose the ability to swallow. He was willing and I was desperate, so on with the show.
My body eats up anything it doesn't like, such as donor bone, so bone from my hips were used for the last two surgeries. They do that at the same time as the spinal surgery. I wake up itching all over and covered in hives because this doc uses morfeen (I know how to spell, just didn't want to do it right), even though I was very specific about not wanting it and why. I can truly say I have my a$$, or at least a good bit of my pelvis, on my shoulders.
After forcing myself to do the prerequisites to be released in two days, climb four stairs and poop, I'm on my way home with a very inadequate small amount of hydr0, 30 and no refills, and referral to physical therapy. I won't list all my issues, but DDD and crohns are part of the problem.
Did it fix the problem? Of course not. I completed 60 sessions of PT, as well as working on my own with the help of my occupational therapist neighbor. I've tried alternative therapies, meditation, acupuncture, Tai chi, you name it.
Just over two years ago, I finally had to admit I couldn't work anymore after laying in my vehicle for two hours in the parking lot in tears unable to make it into the office.
My condition is now worse. (Never challenge worse) I didn't think that was possible. Compassionate care doesn't exist. Pain management has become a joke. I've tried to find help, and failed, but no more. I'm on the war path against crap doctors and crap medical care. I don't get disability, because that would require a doctor and I don't even bother seeing one for anything anymore. What's the point?
I used to be one of those people who has talked people who wanted to take their life out of it. You know...that whole "permanent solution to a temporary problem" thing. I don't do that now. When my wake-up call came, I realized not every problem is temporary. After suffering for over 20 years I now understand exactly how they feel. This sh!t is forever and this is definitely not what I signed up for. Where is the exit?
broke, broken and angry as hell.