Four years ago today, I went under the knife for the first (and hopefully last!) time. After years of back pain, which escalated to severe and eventually caused paralysis in my left leg and foot, it was time to find a fix.

When I was told that a simple stumble or fall could cause permanent paralysis, I made the decision – it was time for surgery to remove the ruptured and herniated disk in my back that was causing the blinding pain and immobility. Now, for someone who enjoys being on the go and being active, this was a hard decision to get to. But immobility certainly wasn’t an option!

The surgery couldn’t have gone more smoothly – though there was an hours-long delay to get out of the prep room and into the surgical suite. Fortunately, I had my husband and parents with me to keep me entertained, and keep my nerves calm during the wait.

When Dr. Small, my surgeon with the Florida Orthopaedic Institute, came to check on me in the recovery room, I do recall asking him, through a drug-induced haze, “I’ve been invited to go to Bermuda next month. Can I go?,” proving that travel is always on my mind. When he agreed that I could go, I fell back into a restful sleep.

And sure enough, a month later I was Bermuda-bound, and my traveling continued. That year, just months after having limited movement in my left leg and foot, my girlfriends and I went swimming with the whale sharks in Mexico, and we later went out west and hiked Arches National Park, went on a full moon hike at Bryce Canyon National Park and hiked part of The Narrows at Zion National Park.

Diving in with the whale sharks off of Isla Mujeres, Mexico.

Diving in with the whale sharks off of Isla Mujeres, Mexico.

Arches National Park

Arches National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

The Narrows at Zion National Park

The Narrows at Zion National Park

Traveling and adventures haven’t slowed down a bit since April 2010 – in fact, I’m going more places and doing more things, and loving it!

And I realize, nothin’can hold me back!