My life changed suddenly when a jumping castle deflated and trapped a group of toddlers, including my then four-year-old son.
As I pulled the jumping castle off the children, I felt a strong sensation in my back, which in reality was lumbar discs tearing and bulging.
Overnight, my once active lifestyle morphed into battling to cope with excruciating pain.
All I could do was cry with the pain, and I cried most days for about two years. I couldn’t stand long enough to hang out the washing, cook a meal, or even make a cup of tea.
I couldn’t take my children to or from school, instead I had to conjure all my energy just to wave goodbye or say hello at the front door, before lying back down on the couch.
Eventually I ended up on antidepressants, something I never dreamed of doing, but they saw me through a very dark period in my life.
My injury has no cure, except for drastic surgery, which carries many potential risks, as well as a significant price tag that would have meant selling the family home.
I chose to be treated through a multidisciplinary pain clinic in a public hospital. Although it took 18 months to be admitted, it was the turning point in my life.
The pain clinic gave me access to hydrotherapy, exercise rehabilitation, and physiotherapy, and the combination of these has been fantastic.
When I started my therapy, I would walk out the front door to the corner and back, a distance of about 20 metres. I increased it by two metres every day.
Initially, I was taking 14 pain pills a day, which numbed my brain as well as the pain, and I’ve been able to reduce the opiods to a tolerable dosage.
I can now drive a car again, and do most things myself. I still can’t lift my children into my arms, or take the shopping out of the car, and my 75 year-old mother vacuums my house for me, but I am seeing progress every day.