Last Friday, I had a sharp pain in my back and it got progressively worse to the point where I could not move.
I had to lie in bed and couldn’t even turn right or left.
By Saturday, the pain became unbearable and when I sat up for more than 10 minutes, I became breathless and had to lie down again.
My dad-in-law, aunts and my mum advised me to go to the A & E. I saw no point in it as I knew it was either a muscular or nerve problem, although I couldn’t figure out why I was hyperventilating.
I just had to suffer through the weekend.
The last round, when I had complications from my caesarean, I could not walk and was homebound. I thought that was bad enough not being able to go out and do the things I needed to get done.
This time it was much worse because every little movement resulted in intense pain and I was literally confined to the bed.
The feeing of utter helplessness was extremely frustrating.
The hubs had relatives from abroad staying with us and instead of being able to attend to them, his aunt who is a retired nurse ended up tending to me!
Everyone went out for dinner and I was left in the dark and silent house.
Made me think this is how it feels when we get old, become wheelchair bound and stuck at home while everyone gets on with their lives.
A pretty depressing thought.
Monday morning came, and boy, I will never see Mondays the same way again!
Thankfully, the physio was able to identify the problem and start treatment. After the first session, a whole lot of pain was relieved and I could walk again.
The hubs wanted to know what caused my sudden intense pain.
The physio explained what was happening in great detail but basically what I gathered was that the muscles from my neck all the way down to my hips were strained to the point that they were inflamed and in spasm.
The things I did over the preceding days must have been the straw that broke the camel’s back, such as lifting Kate, sitting with a poor posture and perhaps using the new back support seat the wrong way.
As we talked further, it was apparent that all those years of neglecting my back cumulated in the severe pain I was experiencing.
When I had the first few kids, I didn’t know anything about sleep routines. Whenever they fell asleep in my arms, I would be afraid to move them in case they got woken up and started crying, and ended up holding the babies in all sorts of awkward positions.
And when the kids were sick with fever and very whiny, I would try to pacify them by rocking them to sleep on the rocking chair, and ended up sleeping through the night on the chair.
Add to that the half dozen kids that I carried over the years, always on my right side, which put my body off balance and resulted in my hips being rotated.
So yeah, I can clearly see why my back is busted.
I’m so glad for all the help that I have received over the past few days. My sisters-in-law for covering my taxi duties, my parents for taking the kids to run their errands, my dad-in-law for buying me the very expensive back brace which he swears by, the hubs for settling Kate and taking over all my other tasks, and my dear friend Sandra for being there at the right time, meeting me at the carpark when I started hyperventilating and waiting with me throughout my second physio appointment.
As I left the carpark, a lady who was dressed in work attire saw me struggling with the heavy doors. She asked with such concern in her voice, “Are you ok? Do you need any help at all?”
It was not what she said but the manner in which she paused, and stood there to see if she could render any assistance, that startled me.
In our world of frantic rushing, that gesture from a kind stranger put me in such a delightful mood even though physically I was not feeling so great.
In fact, she was ever ready to help by handing me my painkillers, running downstairs to get a straw or covering the blanket over me properly.
Some moments she was rather insistent and kept asking, “Do you want more medicine, mummy? I open for you some more?”
Perhaps she thought the more pills I consumed, the quicker my recovery.
When I returned home after my physiotherapy session, I told her that it was better if I did not carry her anymore.
She replied, “Ok mummy. If not you will hurt your back again, right.”
I hope she keeps to her word!