Oh boy, can I identify with you. I hurt my back early in my career and now, at 45, it still haunts me. I do, however, have a funny back injury story for you.
At 23, I had been dating my boyfriend (now husband) for several months and I had renewed my back injury so I was off work for a bit. I lived by myself, my DH lived with his parents still and I had just given him a key to my apartment.
One morning, I woke up and tried to get off my (waveless) waterbed but I felt a sharp twinge in my back. No problem - I figured I would just use good body mechanics and roll to my side and push up off the bed. Nope, didn't work - that shot agonizing shocks through my back. Ok, I figured, I'd roll on to my stomach and get on my hands and knees to get up. Nope, that made me dissolve into tears from the pain. So, there i was, lying on my bed, in horrible pain and unable to get up.
I reached for the phone and dialed my boyfriend's phone number. His mother answered the phone (it was 7 a.m.!) and I tearfully asked for her son. He got on the phone and all I could do is wail, "I can't get out of bed, my back hurts and I have to peeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.........."
Lucky thing I'd given him a key. He came right over, lifted me out of bed and I was fun. It was just a spasm and I was really ok after that. But I've never forgotten that phone call.