A Thin Line

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Irony can be found in a cracked tailbone

When I was a kid, I sometimes saw older people hunched over and walking very slowly. I always felt sorry for them. Especially for the ones who were obviously in pain.

These days, I feel like an old person, hunched over and obviously in pain. Getting older is not for sissies.

Back in the early 1990s, I walked in my sleep. I hadn't done it since I was a kid. But for some reason, I did one night, and I was rudely awakened when my backside landed squarely on the bottom stair of the townhouse I shared with my roommate, Teresa. She heard what she thought was a gunshot, and jumped out of bed and came running. I was quite proud. It took a major noise to wake that one up.

The noise she heard wasn't a gunshot. It was my tailbone breaking. The sound is one I'll never forget. I can't. My back won't let me.

Since they can't exactly put your butt in a cast, all doctors could do was help me manage the pain. They gave me morphine, which I have to say, is good stuff.

We had a party planned, with about a dozen of our friends. Since I couldn't make it back upstairs, Teresa had brought upstairs to me. I put on some sweats, took my medicine, and put on a smile, prepared for our guests. I remember nothing after that.

According to Teresa, and several of our friends, I was pretty much knocked out. I laid down in the floor, leaning against this big, green beanbag chair I had at the time, and slept. With a big dumb grin on my face. They used me as a coffee table, so I'm told.

Like I said, that there morphine is good stuff.

Since that time, I periodically have back pain. It usually starts out minor, because of something minor. This time, I cleaned the bathtub, and when I stood up, something just gave way. I was in some pain yesterday, but today, it's on.

The funny thing - and I mean funny ironically, not funny ha-ha - is that people are always telling me, "You're just going to have to be more careful."

Excuse me, but how is this possible? I can't just not live my life. I have stuff to do, and since my maid, chauffeur, cook, valet, butler and personal assistant all quit, I have to do it. I can't stop living for fear of hurting my back. And I won't live in fear.

Fact is, most of the time, I don't hurt. And I'm fairly careful. I don't lift heavy things, and I know my limits. I say no when I need to. When I begin to hurt, I stop. When I need to rest, I do so. I do my regular stretching exercises for my back.

The doctors have told me that I have a small piece of bone near the sciatic nerve on the left side, and that appears to be the culprit. Every now and again, I'll move just the right way, and that piece of bone pushes against that nerve, and my back, as well as down my left leg, becomes painful. Short of surgery, there's really nothing they can do.

And I ain't going through surgery.

So...here I sit, uncomfortable and with a pain in my back and left leg...again. It's more like a pain in my butt.

Ironic. That's where it all started.

Posted: Feb 22 2011, 10:22 AM by Red On The Head | with no comments
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