That's right, I'm out...for a long time I'm afraid. I've seen a specialist about my back and he's pretty sure I'm going to need surgery. I'm actually pretty happy that he feels this way because so many people have told me that my herniated disc is never going to go back to normal. I'd rather just get surgery over with instead of waiting another year or two to see if things get better, only to need surgery then. I have another appointment with the surgeon on the 15th of this month and we will discuss what we're going to do for sure.
I'm pretty sure I've had a problem with this disc for quite a while, but the current, sciatic nerve problem has been going on for about 5 months now. It's affected my life so much and I'm glad that the surgeon understands that. I am still able to walk around and work, but he understands that I'm normally a pretty active person and this is keeping me from doing the things that I enjoy. Because of this issue, I've had to quit soccer & P90X. I can't go biking, hiking, running, camping or even walk any distance. I can swim at least, but I feel like I've completely missed out on summer. It's even painful to sit and relax in a lounge chair! Argh!!
So I'm hoping that when I see him in a couple of weeks, he'll decide to go ahead with surgery. I'm not sure what the waiting list is like so it may be a while before I can get in. Although "back surgery" sounds terrible, the procedure itself doesn't sound that bad. It is a very small incision and they basically just cut off the piece that's protruding. Then he'll put in an implant called a DIAM to keep the disc from compressing further. I should only be off work for 4-6 weeks and I won't be able to lift much for another 2-3 months.
So that's my news for now. I'll keep you posted on what happens next!