Update: In order to ‘understand’ - I need to give a brief history. See More
I had a cervical fusion of C3-4 and C5-6 back in Dec 2006. There were 2 ‘plates’ and 6 screws placed in my neck. Unfortunately a fall in 2007 caused 2 screws to break entirely, making the fusion ‘drop’ but – it did in fact fuse. This makes that area of my neck immobile. But, what it ‘means’ is that it puts more ‘pressure’ on my other disks and makes them absorb any impact.
I’ve been being ‘monitored’ since 2007. I have more movement in my C2-3 disk than I should. This is nothing new. So, anyone can get in a car or bike wreck, trip down stairs or whatever and can be paralyzed by it – BUT – I have an increased risk factor. Again, nothing new.
The need for more surgery has been a question of when, not if. But, because it wasn’t today, I’ve mainly stayed in denial – knowing in the back of my mind where I refused to look, that someday would be ‘today’ – but since it wasn’t today – I just lived my life.
Again, this is nothing new – I’ve been ‘riding’ all this time and most of you didn’t even know about this. I’ve already spoken of my ‘need’ to ride, what it means to and I simply can’t (or won’t) give it up.
So - The bad news: The accident didn’t do my neck any favors. No real surprise. My neck is sore. The muscles are trying to compensate. They hurt. There is fluid around my disks. The body produces fluid to cushion an injury. My neck in the Doctors words is, “A hot mess”.
What does this mean? Well – the short answer is – I still don’t know.
The current movement in my neck does NOT mean I MUST have surgery – today. BUT as my neck heals and the fluid reduces, the movement could increase to a point where I have to have it ‘now’. I have a follow up for more X-Rays in May – we shall see then. So, I’m not in the clear - yet.
And now – the good news.
The bottom line? I am ‘allowed’ to ‘do’ whatever my body feels ‘up to’ doing.
I was honest with my Doctor. I showed up without the cervical collar I stopped wearing about 4-5 days ago because it hurt worse to keep my neck stiff. Stretching felt better and well, I know my own body. I’ve lived in it all these years. I didn’t even get ‘yelled’ at for not wearing it. Actually he said, I probably didn’t need it….but well you know how Docs are – so once again way to go for my own intuition in taking it off and stretching and icing my neck instead.
I’ve been released to drive. I’m released to ride ‘on the back’ and when I feel up to it…it’s up to me – I’m released to ride my own. All of this is of course with the Doctor realizing my personality – he’s known me 12 years – my stubbornness, who I am, what riding means and – that no matter what, I’m going to get on a bike sooner or later … so while I’m at an ‘increased risk’, I always have been and getting back on sooner isn’t going to make any different than getting on later.
I just have one question. When are we riding?