Giving In, Or Getting Smarter?

Sigh …

Yesterday I had an appointment with Dr. Painless.

On the way to see him, in the elevator, I used my iPhone for a self portrait:

Elevator-1
Self portrait taken in elevator.

I took this photo as a joke, due to my deep and abiding love for Lotus Carroll.  I actually kind of like it because it's blurry enough, you can't really see me.

My cleavage was an unexpected bonus, but then – it usually is.

By the way, if you aren't following Lotus on G+ – you should be.  She's a blogger, a photographer, a NICE person and a rising star in an often bleak world.

Awhile later, I was waiting for Dr. Painless in his office and amused myself taking a photo (again with my phone) through the window of his office.

IMG_1521
The city of Newport Beach with a dose of beach fog.

And then, Dr. Painless was ready to see me.

Or should I say, scold me?

As you may recall, last time I saw Dr. Painless he prescribed Fentanyl Patches for my post car accident chronic pain hell nightmare.  I wore one for about 5 hours, realized it did help my pain, and then took it off because "Dr. Google" told me I'd become addicted if I used Fentanyl patches.  If you missed my post about that experience, you can read it here.

Apparently Dr. Painless isn't a big fan of me being my "own doctor" as he so nicely put it.

Seeing as he's the second doctor to suggest to me I may not know more about medicine than he does, I owned up to the fact I really don't have a degree in specialized medicine.  

My orthopedic surgeon might have told me the same thing???

Harvard wishes they had accepted me into med school, but they didn't.

(Just kidding – I never applied.  I'm sure they would have wanted me though?!)

Anyway –

I explained to Dr. Painless why I didn't follow his instructions.  I voiced my concerns.  I re-explained (for maybe the millionth time?) how hard I've worked for 5+ years to not become dependent on pain meds.

I even told Dr. Painless I feared Fentanyl Patches would lead to me shooting up heroin in old abandoned doorways …

After he finished roaring with laughter and re-composed himself,

He, ahem, had a little talk with me.

I might be the most stubborn patient to ever walk through a doctor's door, but I'm willing to listen.

He explained to me things about pain receptors and pain impulses, and this and that and more of this and more of that …..

He assured me using Fentanyl Patches would not lead to drug addiction.

He was also pretty frank with something I spend a lot of time in denial of –

The forever-ness of my pain.

In other words, it isn't something that's ever going away,

As much as I like to pretend I will wake up pain-free anyday now.

Everyone else seems to LOVE to be on pain meds.  Tons of people seek them out for pure recreational fun.

Everyone but me, apparently.

I hate feeling drugged.

My conversation with the doc was long and complicated and medical-jargon-y-ish …

But I came out of his office agreeing to two things.

   1.  Beginning today I will (gulp) wear a pain patch.

   2.  I will immediately begin looking for a different way to transport my camera gear because apparently a backpack "is the absolute worst thing" I could be using.  (My arm doesn't function enough to carry any type of bag or hold anything – so I thought a backpack was a good option.  Apparently buying a case on rollers is immediately mandatory.)

Dr. Painless also loaded me up with some "emergency" steroids  pain meds  tactics for my upcoming trip back east.  Every time I travel I go into horrible pain flare-ups.  If/when this happens on my upcoming trip I'll have everything possible with me to attempt to get it under control.  

But,

That was the other thing ….

Dr. Painless was quite frank saying, "Some days you've got to accept you're just going down."

He was telling me I will (no matter what I do) still have days when I have to go hide in a corner, curled in a ball, and just wait out the pain.  The goal is to have fewer of those days, but he was very blunt about the fact I will still always have them.

I'm, pretty fucked up, after all.

So, okay then.

This is my life.

I've tried everything else,

Now, I'm going to try being a compliant patient.

I did say try, right?

© Twenty Four At Heart

12 Responses to “Giving In, Or Getting Smarter?”

  1. Di

    OMG… I thought you WERE using a camera gear bag with wheels.. sheesh, Suzanne. Backpacks, even for young students with no previous injuries reek havoc with their shoulders’ neck and back. Lucky I have not been to medical school and ended up as your doctor because I would have reamed you a new one!@!! Now behave yourself.

  2. Michelle

    So, been shopping for a bag on wheels? There must be some pretty ones out there just for you! 🙂

  3. Linda P

    I’m thinking you need a Hunka-hunka Boy-Toy to haul your camera gear around:) A eunuch of course so Briefcase doesn’t have to worry about him making advances on your impressive rack, um I mean, you:D
    I truely hope that Dr. Painless elevated all your concerns about the patch and that you will fine some relief in wearing them. Take care on your trip and enjoy your visit.

  4. Karl

    Glad he explained things better and that you’re going to be more compliant. And I wish you pain-free days during your travels.

  5. Jan

    You’re the second most stubborn patient to walk into a doctor’s office, because I usually do *not* listen – the last time I did, I had my tonsils unnecessarily removed.
    Now, having said that, I’m glad he’s reassured you that using the patches won’t turn you into a drug addict and, like Linda, hope they bring you some, if not a lot of, relief. (((Suzanne)))
    Oh, and I’ll be interested to hear what kind of rolling camera bag you get.

  6. Jen

    One of the things I learned in my chronic pain management classes is the narcotics don’t necessarily take away the pain, they take away the suffering. I spent a year on Vicodin dealing with a severe spine problem and I know that’s no way near what you’re dealing with but I believe it. I was completely functional on the drug and while stopping it cold after surgery wasn’t the most fun, it was doable. Fentanyl is in a different class of potency but if it makes the day bearable, why not. As much as we are warrior women who can handle pain, as one of my friends likes to say “why put yourself through it if there’s something available that makes life easier and better”. At the time I gritted my teeth and ignored him but I think he has a point. Hang in there!

  7. Missy

    How about a traveling companion to carry all your stuff? I’m sure that’s what sets off your pain. Even manipulating carry ons is a pain, so to speak.

  8. lisleman

    I hope you get control of that pain. But if you keep posting cleavage elevator shots like that on G+ you might be getting offers to help carry your stuff and following you around. All the best.

  9. Mike E

    Cleavage is always nice 😉 lol Hope all is well! Good luck with the patches!

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