Here’s what I chided myself with post-op…repeated it to several other wonderful SIJD-er’s who have undergone SI Surgery…”you’ve lived with this pain for X amount of years, give it at LEAST a few months to heal!”
I will share with you what I WISH someone would have shared with me post-op (excuse me if it’s to much for you right now! Just chuck it out if it is and please accept my apologies in advance!)…
My advise to long term SIJD-er’s is not to fret at all for the first THREE mos, this is really your REST phase!!!
3mos is the FIRST marker, the next is 6mos., then 12mos and finally 18 and finally at 24mos. I am not the only one who has healed this slowly. A few others have taken as long as me to heal without even needing disc surgery in the mix and are doing great today!
I do not blame you for feeling anxious! This is the same emotion and mental checklist we have all wrestled with post-op! But I would encourage you to put your analytical gift to work and create yourself a graph. The graph should have include the timed markers I specified!
Here’s the goals you should (in my humble opinion) do your utmost best to focus on:
1. BLACK OUT any record of your pain for the first 3mos post-op on your graph because they are NOT a prediction of your future!!!!!
2. INSTEAD, To give your mind, emotions and spirit something to fixate on, write out a scripture for yourself or something positive each day. After meditating on it, write yourself a little note-on your graph-for each of the days within the next 3mos. This note should be of what God is speaking to you in His word that day…trust, resting in Him etc.
3. After the first 3mos, begin to graph your recovery. Over the next 2yrs you should notice a small but gradual improvement but it will be most noticeable once you are able to look back a few months.
4. At 6-9mos post-op, if you are still in a significant amount of pain…then we’ll get back to the drawing board, revisit the disc issue and get you to a Discogram.
You may or may not end up needing disc surgery…but take heart in knowing it would truly most typically be the last layer of that “onion” called Low Back Pain that we must peel only ONE layer at a time! Sims advised me that the best course of action is to address the SI Joints FIRST!
TERRIBLE TRIAD checklist…by having your SI Surgery with Sims/Weiss , they’ve already tested and treated your for the following ‘onion layers’ that you can now be assured of:
1. Piriformis Syndrome-check!
2. You’ve peeled of SIJD-check!
3. Last one is Lumbar disc-?
But thank God disc surgery is much more common, readily understood and surgically treated routinely! You don’t need to be a detective on this one!!!!
I think it does take some time for us long term SIJD-ers to calm our “fight or flight” response to pain down post-op. We are so used to PAIN=PANIC! And for good reason! We are also used to thinking we’re going to finally get better and then, we didn’t…UNTIL our SI Surgery with the pro’s happened!
So, it will take your body time to “let go” of it’s fight or flight response-protocol to pain AND it will take some time for your emotions to realize that you can let yourself coast for the next few months post-operativly! Even though you probably feel like a horse ready for a race still trapped behind the gate, your post-op RESTING phase won’t last forever…drink it in, you won’t have this luxury for long!
You no longer need to be your own “double agent” and decode what your pain may mean! You’ve seen the best in the industry for SI stuff. It is extremely hard to “let go”, I know!! But imperative nonetheless to your recovery as our mind and emotions affect that too! REST
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