From a Pinched Sciatica in Panama to Peterborough – A Surprise Journey

2015-05-02 17.33.59After having just returned to Peterborough and receiving a ‘clean bill of health’ from my oncologist since starting my C Journey almost one year ago, to scheduling my reconstruction surgery, to returning to Panama – life seemed like I had extended it’s arm once again to the next chapter. Back to the beaches to welcome in our new Tiki Bar at Bahia – with my 18-year old daughter along to visit for the month, reconnect and get to know and realize what I love so much about Panama.

After only a few days back, I began having all the signs of a pinched sciatica. It was everything I could do to make it down to the inauguration of the long-awaited Tiki Bar, pose for a photo or two, take in the tremendous waves we were experiencing at the time and crawl back up into my bed.

I went to our trusted Dr. Levy, who introduced me to his orthopaedic specialist and nurse who confirmed I had all the classic signs of a pinched sciatica – except it wasn’t going away. They even paid me a house call when they learned I just could not get out of bed to pay them a visit. When I fell trying to get to the bathroom, it was because I had no feeling in either leg. An ambulance was called and they soon discovered that an ambulance gurney would not fit in the elevator of the condo. I was strapped to a flat board , tipped and carried on this down the elevator (practically choking) until reaching the ground floor. I remained on that flat board, strapped to the gurney from that point, until I reached San Fernando Medical Center. There I was x-rayed and it was confirmed I did not break any bones and indeed had a pinched sciatica. I was sent home via wheelchair and a friend’s back seat – with more pain meds.

After a few days too long in bed, the decision became clear that I needed to get my butt back to Canada to my loving and very worried husband, family and medical team. Linda Tabakman stepped in as my Guardian Angel, working with me to stabilize my meds enough to get on a plane. Judi Campagna organized flights to get my daughter and herself on a flight with her – accompanied via wheelchairs, etc. I was literally ‘carried’ back to Canada and greeted by my husband, and escorted to my local hospital and Cancer Care team by the next morning. This is when Stage 2 of this almighty journey took a turn to the worst – one which none of us ever expected.

Read on to Part 2….”It is Time to embrace what is….and let go of what you wanted to happen.”

About denisemacdonald

I am a Canadian entrepreneur who has been spending the majority of my time between Canada and Panama, Central America. Living oceanfront, I am an 'investment consultant', predominantly in the area of real estate in the beaches areas. Photography is my hobby. In April, 2014 I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Triple Negative Breast Cancer. I will be sharing my journey here on these 'pages'. If you would like to learn more about "Triple Negative" breast cancer, please click onto
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4 Responses to From a Pinched Sciatica in Panama to Peterborough – A Surprise Journey

  1. Dagmar Leuenberger-Swift says:

    We love you and will send you all the positive energy from BC we can. xoxo

  2. mslook says:

    We love you so much! Thank you for sharing this! How can we help? Prayers!

  3. Darlene Sage says:

    You are in our thoughts and prayers always. We will always cherish meeting you and hope to visit with you soon. Sending only positive love and prayers to you and your family. Love always, Bob and Darlene Sage.

  4. kuto vasquez says:

    Denisse, I just got back from the US for my yearly check up….I read all this news this afternoon and chatted with Darcey and she told me about your condition.
    I want you to know that yoou are in my thoughts and prayers. You are afighter Denisse and as one of the many friends you made in Panamá all this time, I want you to know I miss you…..

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