“Let Your Backbone Slide.” Do you remember that song? I know….I’m showing my age. But I’m not here to talk about old high school songs or rap music. What I am here to talk about is taking the good with the bad and being happy, and letting things roll off your back, or letting ‘your backbone slide’, both figuratively and…well for me, literally.
Let me explain. You see, I have Scoliosis. For those unfamiliar, it’s a back deformity where the afflicted person has one, or in my case, two curves in their spine. They can be in varying degrees, and for some, it doesn’t affect them. Others require physical therapy, bracing or surgery for the severe cases.
Here’s where my story comes in. Doctors have seen me, orthopaedic and spinal surgeons have brought an audience in to see me, and…well, physiotherapists and massage therapists have been in awe when they see me for the first time. As I said earlier; I have two curves in my spine, one at an angle of 48 degrees, the other 55 degrees. Breathe! Surgeons won’t touch me unless it’s a matter of life or death, so I’ve been in physiotherapy since I learned I had it about sixteen years ago, and I’ll be in physiotherapy for the rest of my life….and I’m very happy to be there too.
None of this is bad. At least, I don’t think so. Why you ask? Because like many things in life that some of us fail to see, I consider having Scoliosis a blessing in disguise.
Quoted from my book ‘I’ll Never Wear a Backless Dress’, I said, “I made a deal with God. I look after my body; he looks after my back.” So far nobody’s broken that deal.
I’m in better physical shape than a lot of people I know, and I owe that to having Scoliosis. How? Because if I didn’t have it, I probably wouldn’t pay so much attention to my daily exercise regime, I wouldn’t keep my weekly physiotherapy appointments and I certainly wouldn’t watch my weight like I do.
How come? Because I’m happy to have the physical freedom that I do, and I know that if I don’t keep up with all these things, it could be easily taken from me. I have learned to love getting up at 4:45am to exercise, to revel in the wonderful things that I can do each day and to enjoy life and live it to the fullest. I take nothing for granted and I couldn’t be happier with my life.
I believe that every day we’re given is a gift, and every healthy day we’re given is a very special gift that we should enjoy.
I’m resisting the urge to break into the lyrics to ‘Let Your Backbone Slide’…just fyi.
But seriously, don’t think of the things you can’t do….think of what you can do. Despite having severe bilateral Scoliosis, I’ve got a college diploma, two kids, a husband, a happy and healthy home, four published books…and a loving cat. What more could I ask for?
If you have a personal story that you’d like to share, please feel free….
Sandy Appleyard is from Niagara Falls, Canada. As a prolific author, she loves reading, physical fitness, animals and of course, writing. Find all of her books via the links above or visit her website to subscribe and never miss a new publication.