My surgeon has released me. He says that there is nothing more he can do for now. He will perform that last procedure, a neurotomy, again annually. The only value of the neurotomy is that is makes the pain (somewhat) manageable.
My regular physician is managing my symptoms. She prescribes my pain medications, signed the paperwork for my disabled parking placard, maintenance issues and so forth. She wants to send me back for more physical therapy. I agree and understand why she thinks it is vital, but heck, how do I tell her I cannot afford it?
They tell me I am as "good" as I'm going to get, in fact, I will slowly get worse. I'm still only able to work part-time now. At least (for now) I have my crappy Blue Cross insurance, although the premiums are killing me, but it covers so little, I'll be lucky to have the last surgical procedures paid off before I'm due for the next neurotomy. The one pain medication that gave me the best results, Blue Cross won't cover because it's too expensive.
I'm having my wheelchair ramp put in next month. I still get around a bit with my cane, although I'm gradually needing the walker more, and I have some time yet before I'll need a wheelchair, but the four steps up to my door are simply more than I can handle now. I'm quite lucky there, because someone is giving me the ramp, although I have to find someone to install it (another challenge in itself.)
I understand why the doctor is pushing me to go back to P.T. She says I've atrophied and it is very important to build my core muscles now (safely) before I degenerate further. Although my mobility is impaired, I still have some mobility and the P.T. could extend that period somewhat. It's the rock and the hard place.
And I look around and realize how many are in this impossible position. You want to work, but there are obstacles. Some of those obstacles could be conquered if the deck wasn't stacked against you. But hey, Blue Cross needs their large profits for their shareholders. And if anyone tries to unstack the deck, well, they must be lazy Socialists who refuse to pull up their bootstraps because it's easier to be a leech... or something like that, I tend to confuse the talking points at times.
Meanwhile, my birthday is 20 days away so Blue Cross sent me a lovely remembrance for the occasion. Yep, they are increasing my premiums again due to my age.
And so it goes.