Rhianna wrote this song called S.O.S. (Rescue Me) and I am 100% sure it is NOT about being rescued from her body, but here are some of the lyrics:
S.O.S please someone help me.
It’s not healthy… for me to feel this way
Y.O.U. are making this hard,
I can’t take it, see it don’t feel right
S.O.S. please someone help me
It’s not healthy… for me to feel this way
Y.O.U. are making this hard
You got me tossin’ and turnin’ and can’t sleep at night
So… the “you” in this song, as it applies to moi, is my low back. My super sucky low back, which has been giving me fits for exactly one month now. Actually, it bothered me last summer too, before my pregnancy with Super Baby. But then when I got pregnant and stopped riding my bike for 4 hours at a time, or running 30 miles a week, my symptoms got better and I had no back pain (actually, lower leg numbness and tingling) the entire pregnancy.
This time around, I am assuming that my incredible lack of core strength post-baby resulted in terrible form during a set of heavy deadlifts at Crossfit the week of September 8. My terrible form caused me to tweak something in my lumbar spine although I did not feel any pain or have a “holy crap I hurt my back!” moment during class. But a few days later my back “popped” while I was just taking a step out of Super Baby’s classroom at daycare. I wasn’t holding her, bending over, trying to lift something, etc… I was simply walking. I fell to the ground and was incapacitated for about 10 minutes. It’s totally not weird for a grown woman to be on her hands and knees in the infant room at daycare. Nobody was starting at me or anything. I eventually made it home, and figured a trip to the chiropractor would be in order. But later in the day I got the familiar tinging/burning/numbness in the left leg and foot. I knew a trip to the Orthopedic urgent care was necessary. This was the first of many doctor’s visits over the next month.
Since that day, I have had an MRI (positive for two herniated discs in the lumbar spine at L4-5 and L5-S1- same as before, just worse looking now), epidural steroid injection, and lots of home PT exercises which I despise. I have tried to do a few things aerobically to keep me from feeling this way…
What way? A way that is not healthy, and not going to make my back feel better and certainly doesn’t accomplish anything. I feel jealous. The Instagram and blogging world is full of people talking about their awesome 18 miler in some super humid weather on a crazy hilly course. Or their new 5k PR, the Yasso’s 800’s they just dominated, getting a PR in Fran, tapering for an Ironman, finally mastering a muscle up, knocking out 100 double-unders, pick your exercise poison. I have done this many, many a time.
What did I do today? I got on the scale because I just wanted to prove that my muscles are in fact wasting away to the point that I am losing weight. So that just makes me sad. I took my dog to the vet. I drove by my old gym and watched every other able-bodied person do a workout I know I could crush… a month ago. I later went to the park with my kids and didn’t climb on anything or chase them around. Because I can’t. I baked some gluten free (blecht) cupcakes and gave them to a friend for her birthday. I first warned her about blechtiness of said cupcakes, although the frosting was delightful. I walked about 1/4 mile in our neighborhood then
ran hobbled back because it started pouring rain. The kids and I painted pumpkins inside while it rained.
I took a bajillion cute pictures of them. Big surprise there. I made Super Baby laugh and smile a lot. She loves smiling. Smiling’s her favorite (Buddy the Elf reference anyone?)
We had dinner, I took more pictures. And after putting the kids to bed, I sat down to tell you all about how this would have been my idea of a perfect Saturday because I got to spend time quality time with my family with minimal meltdowns from Super Toddler. But something was missing… a run in the beautiful fall weather. Or a Crossfit WOD, or an insane showing on the Torqboard at Flywheel. But I can’t do those things without making my pain and numbness worse. So I am left with jealousy.
I am jealous of all of you. I admit it. I want to sit down and map out my 16 week training plan. I want to race. I want to have a recovery day where I eat chocolate chip pancakes, sit on the couch wearing compression socks and watching tv, foam rolling, looking at tomorrow’s killer tempo run. I want to do a Halloween-themed run. I want to do hill work. I want to go run a local race and get 1st place in my age group. I want to run 100 miles in October and 110 in November and 120 in December! I want to actually start my Tobacco Road Marathon training next month like I had planned to. And who knows? Maybe I will. But not at the rate I am
progressing failing to progress.
This epidural steroid injection is not helping and at times I feel worse than I did before the injection- which by the way, HURT LIKE $#!&. It was way worse than getting an epidural when you are having a baby. But you don’t even get to leave with a baby after you get the injection. What a rip-off! Although I most certainly do NOT need anymore Super Children running around here. When I get my next injection, I am asking for them to give me the good Michael Jackson slumber time meds, so that I cannot feel the horror of the medication making its way down to my fried nerves. Then they can wake me up when I am back to normal and ready to run a 10k uphill. Sorry not sorry- I am a wuss.
So don’t think the worst of me if you notice that I’m not all “Woo hoo you are so great! I am so pumped that you are able to run 18 miles while I drag my useless leg around and can’t even pick up Super Girl or Super Toddler because they are too
large and in charge heavy (but cute and tall)!” I truly think you are awesome. All Mother Runners are awesome. All of you training for triathlons, marathons, mud runs, Crossfit competitions, whatever… you kick ass too, no matter how flexible, fast, or strong you are or aren’t. I am just in pain and jealous. Plus, I gave up gluten and wine M-F so that makes me even more irritable. I know it’s not healthy for me to feel this way – both my back and the jealousy thing. At least it’s only my back that is keeping me tossing and turning at night. The jealousy? No. I have a life; a very full, happy life complete with beautiful kids and animals, Super Dad (who has gone straight to the top of the Dad Charts with all he has had to take on now that I can’t do quite as much with our very active older kids), amazing neighbors, friends and family, and my newfound passion for safe effective skincare through Beautycounter (shameless plug!)
Don’t feel bad for me. I will get through this. Whether I come out the other side as a 3:15 marathoner, a non-runner with a renewed commitment to swimming, a yoga convert, or a couch potato, I will at least no longer be in this purgatory-ish place where I have no clue what kind of exercise I can do or whether my leg will be burning for 12 instead of 16 hours a day.
Until then, I will continue to blast your Instagram feeds with cute babies instead of Garmins or kettle bells. I may not post again for two months because I don’t have anything to write about other than potty training or pumpkin patches, but I would love to hear from any of you who have gone through this – the back issues or the potty training 🙂