Pre-Op Insomnia and Anxiety
I heard from the neurosurgeons' office today after my initial visit on 1/26. I was told I need an L4-L5 Spinal Fusion w/ Facets like 10 minutes into the consultation. I liked the doctor immediately, and he brought me to the computer to show me the flexion films that showed my L4 slipping down onto L5 very clearly. He diagnosed this as L4-L5 Instability- which sounds innocuous, but it's what's causing all the problems. I was told straight up that surgery is the only treatment. This news was initially exhilarating and joyful... to think that I might have a shot at escaping this nightmare of disability and chronic pain was amazing!
Somehow, my joy turned to fear and terror later that day. I began to obsess about having hardware placed, and my mind began to race. I think I overdosed on internet spine information, and didn't sleep all night. I even took my Klonopin, but the anxiety just blew right through. I began to question whether this was a good idea.... what if my body rejected the pedicle screw? How would I manage not to bend, twist or lift for weeks on end? What if my caregiver didn't show up one day? How would I manage my two dogs? The puppy is always underfoot, and what if I trip over him?
I accepted a surgical date of March 4th, as my sister can't be here until the end of February. I spent all day thinking about all the things I would need after I got home. And no sleep again tonight...
I am Bipolar, and now fear this stress may be setting off an episode. I wisely made an appointment with my psychiatrist, and will call today to get it moved up if I can. My point is, the reality of committing to this decision can throw anyone off kilter. Perhaps I need a real sleeping pill for a few days until my rest cycle returns to normal. I am just scared, and that's normal. You just can't separate out the physical and the psychological. They are both very powerful.
We just moved to Phoenix in December. I have no supports here, and being alone all day until my husband gets home is rough. I guess I underestimate the stress I am under with all these changes.
Well, I apologize for my rant, but I thank you for listening. Talking it out with my doctor will surely bring my anxiety down. At least I hope so...