One Year With A Back Injury
November 18 is a date I’ll never forget, it’s the date I let my frustration and impatience get the best of me. We had closed on our house two days earlier and were moving and I didn’t have the patience to wait on Mitch to get back to help me move a desk upstairs. I picked it up by myself and started up the steps… then me and the desk fell down the stairs and I found myself on the floor unable to move. I herniated two discs and one was pinching my nerve running to my left foot.
The first month was awful, I had a real sexy limp when I walked and I couldn’t sit but for a minute at a time. I went from being stubborn and never asking for help to completely relying on Mitch to help me get my pants and shoes on. It was not pretty. My doctor gave me one option- neurosurgery. I told him he was insane and that he had never met me before. I was determined to heal myself.
The thing about having a numb left foot and herniated discs is that it hurts to sit or bend my body. I got a standing desk to edit on but if you’ve ever worked with me, you know how often I’m up and down and all over the place. Weekly chiropractor visits with cold laser therapy and ultrasound therapy did a world of good. Bi- weekly massages also helped along with icing my back, stretching daily and using my inversion table also. I made up my mind to fire anyone in my recovery process who was negative. I had zero time for any negativity. I told my back and nerves they were healed, yes I talk to myself often. I also imagined myself waking up and getting out of the bed pain free and moving about freely throughout my day. This is so powerful.
Our new property is on a river so I began walking 3 miles to the river and back daily. Building my muscles back was crucial to my recovery. My chiropractor told me about enzymes for pain so I was able to recover without damaging my body with Advil or other anti inflammatory drugs. My diet was already super clean so I added turmeric and ginger and started juicing to get as many anti inflammatory foods in as possible. I was a gymnast, competition cheerleader, volleyball player, horse back rider, yogi… my whole life I have been athletic and flexible and able to do anything I wanted to. And all of that changed instantly. I also instantly had compassion for people who live with chronic pain. January through March, I slowly started taking clients and working my way back into a routine in my new home and my new way of life. In my mind, I could jump on a horse and take off or do a cartwheel, but then my body would scream at me to remember my back. No thank you. I was determined to live pain free. In April, we flew to Texas and hiked, hunted the hill country, rode a speed boat across the ocean in Galveston and I shot a senior session in Houston. My back did great. Two weeks later,
I flew to Ft. Lauderdale and shot an engagement session with no issues. The next month, we flew to Wyoming for vacation and hiked all over the Big Horn Mountains. It was AMAZING getting to move like myself again and not having to bend down slowly. Over the summer, I was doing yoga again and was shooting about 8 sessions a week with no problems.
I continued seeing a chiropractor, stretching and walking and was convinced I was completely healed. Then one morning in late September on my walk to the river, I slipped on the muddy bank and fell and the pain returned like a slap in the face. It took my breath and made me want to scream at the same time. Back to ground zero. My recovery was much easier since I knew what to do. I was back driving and putting my own shoes on in about 3 weeks. Then one evening in October, I was bending down to let the drain out of the bathtub and the same pain pulled in my back and I was back on the floor. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that my back injuries occur in the fall during wedding/busy season. I read that lower back pain is a sign of father wound, feeling unsupported, suppressed anger, a blocked root chakra. All of the above are true.
As an entrepreneur, it‘s extremely challenging to say no to clients, so I always found myself overwhelmed and burnt out by November. I also allowed clients to walk all over me, but oh how that has changed. This injury forced me to ask for help and it’s one of the most challenging lessons I’ve ever learned, one I wish I didn’t have to learn the hard way.
If you or your loved ones are living in chronic pain, please let it be a lesson for you. Our bodies speak or scream at us, but either way, pain is always a message. Sit with it, breathe into the area that hurts and ask Jesus to show you what needs to be heard. Our bodies remember everything, they hold all the trauma and repressed memories and when there is chronic pain, there is a message. My anger and stubbornness created a year of pain and many ups and downs for me. I was forced to surrender and it almost killed me. Life lessons shouldn't almost kill you, just saying.
Also, let this be your sign to not neglect your physical body. My c-section, office job and sitting at my desk to edit 8-10 hours a day created a weak core which also is a cause of lower back injuries. Get a small rebounding trampoline, walk or run and do yoga or whatever it takes to move your body daily. It’s not just about your pants size, physical activity literally can prevent injuries like mine.
One year later, I edited for 4 hours today, ate lunch at Gage’s school for Thanksgiving, walked my 3 miles, rode to Athens and walked all over several stores with my boys. On the way home, I teared up thinking about how much I’ve grown in just 365 days. This injury has created a very mentally and physically tough Katie. It’s also created a drive in me to keep all negativity at bay because I’ve seen how effective it is. I learned that no is a complete sentence and that it’s ok to need a little more time to edit. My world didn’t implode.
Never take your doctors word as 100% truth, never allow a negative person to be your massage therapist or physical therapist. Eat live, organic food. Walk in the fresh air and rebound to get your lymph flowing. So much of life’s drama disappears when you refuse to allow your energy to leave your body. You are more than capable of healing yourself.