A mere three years into the odyssey that has been back pain, we made some decisions today. I went to see the spine surgeon and we decided that I am going to have an anterior lumbar inter body fusion (ALIF) which is, in very non scientific terms, bad part of spine removed and replaced with an implant. And maybe some screws.
In the con list, this is major surgery and will require an extensive recovery. But the pro list, at this point, is longer. He said that I am young (tell my kids that,) healthy, not obese, and have lots to live for, all of which are helpful to a favorable outcome. Also he was pleased that my expectations were things like "roll over without wincing" and "sneeze without pain." These are considered realistic and manageable desired surgical results.
It is a relief to have a plan and I'm happy that I might be pain free. I'm also scared shitless. I hate needles, let alone major surgery. But I already have my friend and Anesthesiologist, Christy, on board to be there in the operating room, a plus. And the surgeon says he doesn't have to warn people about potential death or paralysis with this type of surgery. Also a plus.
So after we get back from Costa Rica for spring break, it is under the knife for me.