Spinal Fusion Surgery – Week 3 Post-Op

I continued to make progress moving my upper and lower body. My walking speed increased, and I started to walk up and down the stairs on my own. Of course, the biggest pains still come from my rips, shoulders, and lower spine. As far as scar progression, there is a lot of glue residue that hides the healing.

I coined my own term and started to “backercise”. I am not allowed to bend, twist, or lift for six weeks; however, I’ve been dancing within those limits while listening to music to loosen up my body.

My digestive system continues to be the most frustrating part of my recovery. My diet hadn’t changed much from the previous week: popcorn, muffins, m&m cookies, and dark chocolate pretzels. As prescribed by Dr. Jain at Johns Hopkins, I am still taking Senokot to help with that process.

One of the hardest parts about this process is not being able to leave the house. My immune system is too compromised; compounded with my severe asthma and allergies, it is not advised to go outside. This current pandemic is unprecedented, but I am thankful for our ability to quarantine and take the necessary precautions as to not compromise my health and safety.

For Julia,

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Today was another good day for you (3 in a row!). You were up early (around 6:30), and you didn’t have much trouble coming down the stairs. You walked around for a few minutes, and then you settled in your chair. You napped in your chair in the morning, and then you were on face time most of the afternoon and evening. You ate a cinnamon roll for breakfast and chicken and mac and cheese for dinner. This was the most food you have eaten since your surgery. You put on a hip hop workout music channel on Apple Music, and you were dancing around the dining room. You went upstairs for bed with absolutely no trouble, and you didn’t need any help at all!

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Today you woke up very early (5:45 AM) with a sinus infection. We called Teledoc and the doctor prescribed antibiotics, but we had to wait until 9 AM when the pharmacy opened to pick it up. You have had several sinus infections before, so you knew what they felt like. A few minutes after taking the Amoxicillin, you said that your arms and legs were tingling. When you sat back in your recliner chair, the mucus collected in your throat. You couldn’t breathe after trying to cough it up and started to get scared. Dad and I couldn’t figure out if you were having an allergic reaction to the antibiotic or if you were just upset. We ended up calling 911 because you weren’t getting any better. The paramedics came a few minutes later and determined that it was not an allergic reaction. The paramedics and the on-call doctor at Johns Hopkins did not think it was wise to go to the hospital due to your weakened immune system. After about 30 minutes with the paramedics there, you were feeling a little better.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Today we woke up early, so that you could get settled in your chair before Dad left for work. You ate part of a muffin for breakfast. You spent the entire day and evening on face time with friends. The surgeon checked in with us today to see how your recovery was going. You were still concerned about one spot on your back that feels like a pressure point. We sent a picture of your incision to the doctor, and he felt that it was healing well. You were not running a fever, so he felt that there were no signs of infection. We also called your allergist about your weekly allergy injections. Your immune system is compromised because of the surgery and the medications, so injections will not resume until it is safe. You weren’t very hungry throughout the day, but you did snack on popcorn, cookies, and chocolate. You napped from 2:30-4:00, but you were awake the rest of the time. You fell asleep around 10:00 and slept until 7:00 on Tuesday morning.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

You woke up around 7:00 this morning, and you were upset because Dad left for work before you could get up and settled in your chair. The two of us managed to get you up and downstairs and settled in your chair without any problems. You didn’t sleep much today. You decided that you wanted to go to bed as late as possible because you hate sleeping in your bed because you have to be in one spot all night. I took a nap in the evening and woke up around 9:15. I rested for a while longer, and then we got you into the shower around 11:30. You were in bed by 12:30 AM, and you slept until 7:30 AM.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

You decided that you were bored today, and you slept almost all day. You slept through The Incredibles and Finding Dory on Disney+. You did eat 2 chicken nuggets, a few fries, and some mac and cheese at lunch today. You slept in the afternoon, and then you woke up around 3:00. LCBC had HSM as a Zoom session tonight, so you were on the computer from 7 until about 11:15. You decided to sleep in the recliner. You realized pretty quickly that it wasn’t a great idea, but you were already settled in. You decided that your bed is definitely a better option than the sofa for night-time sleeping.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

You got up this morning around 7:45. We had slept in the living room, and I was not awake yet, so you got up on your own. You went upstairs and brushed your teeth on your own, and then came back downstairs. You were walking around downstairs when I got up at 8:00. You ate blueberries for breakfast. You walked up and down the steps and around the downstairs several times in the morning. You were awake more today. Grandma dropped off some M&M cookies and chocolate-covered pretzels for you at lunch time. You took a short nap from about 2:30-4:00 in the afternoon, and you spent some time late morning and early afternoon on face time. In the evening, you walked around the downstairs, and we watched television. You wanted to stay up late because it is hard for you to go to bed when you aren’t completely tired, so you went to bed after midnight.

Friday, April 3, 2020

We woke up a little after 7 and were downstairs by 8:15, which was earlier than usual. You napped in the morning. We watched television most of the day today. We watched Onward this afternoon on Disney+. You weren’t feeling well in the evening. You felt very nauseous. You finally fell asleep downstairs around 10, and you slept until 12:15 AM when we went upstairs to bed.

I really appreciate all of the kind words, messages, and cards I’ve received from loved ones. My friends and family have been amazing supporters, and continue to lift me up during this difficult time. The Face Time calls have really helped me still feel connected with my friends while keeping a safe distance away.


julia grace

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