In the last month I have gotten an X-ray and I was very impressed with the outcome. My lower lumbar the bottom curve has completely straightened and the top has got barely anything to a curve. I am beginning to get used to my brace and sometimes I forget its on. I do get mean looks quite a lot and mybe once or twice been called freaky. Nights are still really hard I haven't been to the full tightness but I am getting there.
This week I have been back to my orthotist and we tightened my brace. I was preparing for the worst but actually it was definitely better than when I first got my brace. It has been tightened a lot but I think I can get to it. With it already being so tight I kind of hoped that he wouldn't have to tighten it that much, but he did and now I do think it is necessary. I do need to work up to the new requirement. I learned that there is a hidden chip in my brace that tells the orthotist how long I have been wearing it. Turns out I have actually been wearing it for eighteen point three hours a day!! Yaay!!! Everyday I go a bit further and soon I have an in brace X-ray. Nighttime is still hard and I haven't made it to full tightness. We had a sleep over and I slept out of my memory foam mattress on a blow up bed!! This week my main goal will be working up to the new lines.
I did it, I did eight hours in my brace without breaks. I have been going over eighteen hours and getting to sleep much better. At night it is not where it needs to be but I am improving each night. In a few days I go back to get it tightened for the last time and then it stays. The brace feels much more comfortable and loose but I am nervous for getting it tightened (what if I am not ready). I have been running in my brace and am just a little slower than before I had my brace. I feel like if I was given more time I could learn to jump and do everything I used to be able to do before the brace.
I did it I slept all the way through the night with my brace on, and I didn’t even realize it. Those herbal rest tablets really helped me sleep, it was quite lose but it still counts. A lot has happened since I last posted, my mum and I talked to my class about the brace and I got it signed. Going into school I was very nervous and knew what I had to say, even though it was the same people I saw and knew everyday I got butterflies talking to them about my spine. What if they thought of me differently or someone made fun of me. Knowing that I had lots of friends in that class helped me but I was still afraid, when we went in and started talking I froze in the moment with everyone looking at me and didn’t say anything or move the whole time my mum talked. I know I could of done better but I was to afraid. For the rest of the day lots of my classmates asked if they could help me at all or carry something for me, that day went better than I had imagined and all of my class and the upper grade signed it for me. Doing math and work or reading my book and writing a story really took my mind off of it at school. For this week I have had if off during PE and lunch snack and recess so I can run around freely. I haven’t been running this week and really want the ability to because it’s one of my favorite things. Distractions have been my best friend this week along with my new memory foam pillow! I use it in class, I have found people that I usually wouldn’t spend time with and talking to them a lot, I think I have found that I have become more sociable and more people want to talk to me and that’s the opposite of what I expected. This is my signed brace:
So a lot has happened since I last wrote the blog, I have been to school, my friend has come over and I have been in my brace for a week now. I was super nervous about going into school, some of my nerves was how I would cope and others about getting on and off, also kids making fun of me. But my biggest concern was others seeing it, I can be very self conscious and I didn’t want people to see it. That day was not as bad as I thought but I think it could of gone better. My mum and I had a conference with some of my teachers to talk about some of my struggles in class.
On friday afternoon one of my best friends came over and distracted me while I wore my brace. Although I see her everyday at school it was nice to have her round and to have a big distraction. We played outside and we also cooled down playing virtual games.
I did it it. I can't believe I actually did eight hours and I beat my highscore, I wore my brace for three hours and ten minutes. I also slept in my brace! After falling asleep at eight forty five I managed to stay asleep in it for three hours!!! Before I went to bed my mum put on my lavender and eucalyptus diffuser so my room smelt amazing and she heated up a lavender teddy. We also found a memory foam mattress topper for my bed. It was so comfy (my brother wants one now!) and made lying down in my brace so much better. My parents also gave me a chewy tablet which had all these natural things in it to help me relax and sleep. After last nights disastrous attempt at sleeping I really thought it would be the same again. I have no idea how I did it, but I guess all of the extra things worked. I slept!
I have done seven and a half hours during the day today but the night did not go well. I just couldn’t get to sleep, What if I stayed up all night?! My back was aching, it felt like sleeping on rock. My whole family was in tears, luckily I did not have to go to school the next day, Snow day!
Once it got to ten thirty we unstrapped the straps but I was still mega uncomfortable. At the time eleven we just ripped it off and I got to sleep without a worry. I will try again tonight but I am still sore. After seven hours and a half my mum and dad set me up a epsom salt bath, that really soothed me.
I have had a long day for the end of the week, today was definitely harder than yesterday. My aches have gotten worse and my back is sore like never before. I am scared for tomorrow because I have so many more hours to do, I didn’t manage to do a full eight hours. I only did seven and a half hours and to think about doing eighteen?! Playing virtual games with my brother has definitely had the effect of taking my mind of it (not to mention getting extra electronic time WooHoo). Too tired to write anymore today, has been to long.
Today I have done six hours with breaks. I did two hours and ten minutes (my first time over two hours!) then after a break I did two hours and fifteen. Then I did an hour and a half with a fifteen minute break. Woohoo, I made it to six hours! We found some distractions that helped me. I played virtual games with my brother for ages and went hunting for baking recipes with my mum. As well as making it to six hours, I had some other major achievements today. I went outside with my brace on for the first time. We went to the local supermarket and walked my dog a mile. To someone else this might not seem major but it really was. I was really worried about being too sore at the supermarket and not being able to go any farther, what if I got stuck?! I was also worried about people seeing the brace, but it actually hid really well. I did loosen my brace a little because my back was aching a lot. I have become used to sitting down with it, but for now I have to sit very straight. But I can’t get up from lying down my dad has to lift me up onto my feet. I am dreading tomorrow because it’s going to be a long long day and not to forget eight painful hours in my brace. But I am going to try to do two and a half hours without taking it off. I will close it here and will be posting in the evening tomorrow.