It’s July of 2009. I have just graduated high school and I’m still having a lot of problems in my lower back that have been plaguing me for 2 years. My parents decide to take me to a back specialist because nothing else is helping, and I am starting to get numbness down my legs when I sit and stand for periods longer than 5 minutes. It’s almost unbearable. I still remember the doctor coming in after getting the x-ray results and telling me:
“You have been playing soccer for two years with two broken vertebrae. I have seen it where the one on top slips forward far enough and severely pinches and possibly can sever the spinal cord.”
“Yeah, let’s fix that,” was my reply. Maybe a week later I was being prepped to go back for surgery. Of course, I was still a kid and my thoughts were secretly racing. Spinal surgery always comes with a chance. Would I wake up paralyzed? Would I wake up at all? I didn’t voice those worries or concerns because I had to be strong. That’s how I always did it; suppressed and concealed my emotions.
During this stage of my life, that way of thinking got the best of me. Starting college in the fall I would not only have the physical healing from the surgery to deal with, but the emotional healing from depression and suicidal thoughts to overcome as well…
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