Sunday, September 15, 2019

Can't escape the pain

It's been over a year since my surgery. I've halfheartedly started a few blog posts, but didn't get anywhere with them. In my experience, when I need to post the most is precisely when I don't post. That would continue to be true for the past 12 months.

Post-op a year ago everything was just ducky. Good recovery. Took lots of time to make sure I was strong before heading back to work. And then. Then the pain started in October, it increased through November and December and took a turn for the worse just before Christmas. Then I knew things were bad that even with pain meds - Tramadol for the most part - I was waking up with pain in the night, and was looking forward to my 4 hour window so I could take another dose. Then I graduated to Dilauded and have been there ever since. 

I'm highly uncomfortable with taking narcotics every 4 hours just to function, and that doesn't even manage all of the pain. I've re-upped my medicinal marijuana prescription and need to order some more with the hopes that if I can reduce some of my narcotic use, that will allow me some pain relief and lessen the discomfort I feel every time pain meds.

I consulted my surgeon in December, got x-rays and a CT scan and nothing turned up to explain the source of the pain. 

I sought a second opinion in March at the Hand and Upper Limb clinic at St. Joseph's hospital in London, ON (the not exciting London). The doctor had some good ideas about specific nerves and damage to them, but in the end, after trying a few options with no results I had a come to Jesus moment about my health and pursuit of a source to my shoulder pain. I just couldn't journey down the path any longer. I just didn't have the energy anymore to find the source of the pain. My fight was over. 

I talked to my shoulder doc about one last biopsy to ensure there was no infection and then hanging up the gloves. He agreed. Results showed no infection. I asked for a referral to pain management clinic and I'm now on the waiting list. Still taking my dilauded every 4 hours, still in pain. Still in a shitty mood due to the pain more often than I'd like to be.

If you'd told me 10 years ago I'd be here, I would never, ever have believed it. It's been a death by a thousand cuts, I'm the frog in the boiling water, it's the slow and sure diminishing of my spirit.

I spent all of my spoons on Friday (and tapped into much of Saturday's supply) going to City Folk music festival here in Ottawa. A couple of my favourite bands from university were playing and I was determined to make it through. I jacked myself up on some extra steroids, put on my comfy shoes and headed out to see Live, Bush and Our Lady Peace. While OLP  didn't play Thief, I re-discovered the song while I was listening to their music in the week leading up to the concert. They talk about a thief living inside of someone's head, it's based on a young girl with a brain tumor, and the thief stealing her life away. You can see why this song spoke to me. RA is taking more and more away from me, and I don't really have a good plan to get any of it back.