Monday, November 28, 2011

My Poor Husband

Things have been a little rough around here lately. Back in August, Chuck was helping a family move when he felt a tweak in his back. It was annoying for weeks until he played some pretty intense racquetball (the only kind he knows). Later, the tweak tweaked harder. It was not good. Then bad turned to worse, and Chuck's been in wicked pain ever since. After a plethora of chiropractic visits, orthopedic visits, more and more pain, and finally an MRI, we found out what was wrong with him: a herniated disc in his back. And not just any herniated disc, the "worst herniated disc" his doctor had ever seen. Yikes.

Surgery is scheduled for Wednesday, December 7th, which is about two weeks later than we had hoped. It's apparently not that risky as far as back surgery goes, but still. It's back surgery. That can't make anyone feel 100% comfortable. But we feel like it's the best decision. We're also secretly hoping for a cancellation to get him into the O.R. sooner rather than later.

I know it's hard for Chuck. Obviously. He's in serious, near-constant pain and is frustrated with all the things he can't do, namely, play with his kids (kidS--we have children! not just a child! I still am not used to this), help me with the kids and around the house, and sleep (quite possibly the most frustrating). He feels helpless and powerless and worthless. It's not good for his morale.

But it's also hard for me. We all know how much help I need around the house and not having that help is really wearing on me. If I didn't have a new baby and was getting eight straight hours of sleep, maybe I'd feel better, but it's been ridiculously hard. I'm tired. Like permanent red eye tired. I'm emotional (translation: I'm crying a lot). I'm just spent.

I know, I know. This should be about Chuck. He's the one in pain, pain worse than his kidney stones and more constant. But I've never been good at being a compassionate caretaker. When Chuck had one of his first very bad episodes and was laid out on the floor for awhile, I basically threw his iPad at him and told him to keep himself busy. Pretty loving, right? I love my husband, but this is just not how where I excel in showing it.

So needless to say (but I'll say it anyway), we're looking forward to the 7th. Most patients wake up from the surgery having none of the previous pain, only surgery pain. He'll take off from work for a bit and hopefully he'll recover quickly.

I guess when they say, "For better or worse" in marriage vows, this is what they're talking about. I'm just hoping Chuck will forgive this, my "worse."

Chuck's MRI. Pretty awesome to see, right? Disc oozing into nerve = NOT GOOD.


  1. Poor Chuck! and poor Erin. Seriously. I feel for you guys. I empathize with Chuck. For me, any pain is bad pain. I'm a total wimp and complain a lot when I am the least bit uncomfortable. So I cannot imagine what it's like to have legitimate chronic pain. And I empathize with/for you, I'm totally dependent on Marc for help. My house was messy for 3 days until last night when I enlisted Marc to help me tidy up completely.

    Good luck you guys! Stay strong!

  2. poor, poor you guys. the 7th is getting closer, tho. . . of course. :)

    hang in there - i'm hoping for a very speedy recovery for everyone's sake!

  3. Steve had back surgery for a herniated disc too...about 13 years ago. I wonder if it is the same disc? So I can say I know what you are talking about here when they are in constant pain. Good luck! It was successful for Steve and no problems since. Hang in there!

  4. Yikes! Sorry to hear he's been in so much pain. Glad to hear surgery is approaching and the problem can be resolved...thank goodness for modern medicine!

    The Elders Quorum can't afford for two in the presidency to have back problems. They're the only reliable movers in the area :(

  5. Amanda, after this, I'm not helping anyone move again. Just not worth it. I'd rather chip in to pay for a moving company.