Do I have surgery now and risk paralysis?
Or do I have surgery later on in life and hope it wouldn’t get any worse?
I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat. It was all I thought about. I was terrified and I just didn’t know what to do for the best.
It was worse because I knew that only I could make this decision.
A stressful time
Eventually, after months of research, tears and stress, I decided on the surgery.
I knew that it would be difficult and a long recovery, but I knew if I didn’t go through with it, my back would continue to deteriorate with age.
I don’t think I could have made this decision with the support of others on the forum, as reading their experiences and seeing their surgery photos and how well they were doing after surgery made the whole thing seem less scary.
And the fact that I had never been in hospital before didn’t help.
I was scared of the unknown.
I couldn’t see my future as I just didn’t know what would happen.
I knew it was highly unlikely, but I couldn’t stop worrying that something would go wrong and that I’d end up worse off than I was, maybe paralysed – how would my family and I cope?
I felt selfish for putting my family through all this stress too and would often cry myself to sleep.
I even went on a holiday to try to relax and forget about it all, but the holiday was ruined by my panic attacks and palpitations.
It was always in the back of my mind.
I wanted to give myself the best possible chance of a smooth operation and recovery.
I stared at my phone for about 10minutes in shock – this was what I had been waiting for all these months…it was now real.
What on earth was I doing?!