I was all Happy Pants this weekend. I had this awesome post planned out for you today because it’s VD-Day and I love Valentine’s Day like I love Diet Coke and Uncrustables and anyone who can use the phrase “soft palms” as a put-down.
I love Valentine’s Day like everything I love: in an unnatural, slightly creepy way. I’m not even about romance. It’s just the red and pink and sparkles and hearts and *swoons* and normally I take the day to buy myself something extravagant and unnecessary just because I can. That way, I’m never all SAD PANTS if no one else gets me a candy heart or whatever. Nope. I just swoon over my diamonds or ridiculous purse and sigh happily because it’s just a good day.
Then, last night, just, well, okay, let me back up.
Last week was kinda a clusterfuck. You read my blog, anxiously checking for updates, refreshing your browser over and over again in the hopes that maybe, just maybe I’ve decided to pollute the world with more of my garbage, or I’m going to pretend you do, because obviously, my feelings were wounded enough last night.
So last week, I broke my tooth while sleeping. HILARIOUS.
Then, I got a double ear infection the very next day. Not quite so hilarious.
Then, because I am lucky, I got a migraine.
If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know that I get My Grains. They started in my early twenties and by the time I popped my daughter out (I was 28), I had one every day. Every single day. I may exaggerate some things (especially my hatred of Mark Zuckerberg), but My Grains aren’t one of them.
They also aren’t particularly funny. Upon occasion, I’ll bring them up here on my blog, but generally, I try not to because, well, I don’t know, it’s not something I like to talk about very much. They’re not very interesting and what’s to be said beyond, “man, I hate them,” or “man, this is really hard some days,” or, “man, sometimes, it’s hard to feel anything but sad about them.” It’s not worth it to get into that stuff because it doesn’t make me feel any better to say it. It doesn’t make you feel better to read it. And in the end, they just are.
I’ve been fortunate to have found something that helps stave off most of the migraines. The break-through ones are normally managed by another drug. Where I run into problems is when I have something else happen.
Something else like, let’s say, a double ear infection and a broken tooth.
Here’s what happens: I get a migraine and I’m all EYE OF THE MOTHERFUCKING TIGER and sometimes, it goes away.
Sometimes it doesn’t and I’m still all YOU CAN DO THIS, EYE OF THE MOTHERFUCKING TIGER, and then it still doesn’t go away, and then it’s off-hours, so I wind up in Urgent Care weeping, begging them to lop off my head.
That’s what happened last night and why I’m not telling you about the worst date of my life which is what I’d wanted to tell you about because, well, obviously.
I broke down and went to Urgent Care, which is like, the last place I ever want to go because I’m not interested in dying of Typhoid Fever or whatever infectious disease the patient before me had. But I knew they’d give me a shot in the ass of something and I had an appointment with my neurologist today anyway, so it was a win.
In fact, when I went in, I said, “I have an appointment with my neurologist tomorrow at 11 AM but I am in so much pain that I cannot think,” or something like it.
I didn’t say this:
“I want hardcore narcotics now.”
*breezily, examining nails* “Um, I want Vicodin. Lots of it. I have “pain” or something.”
They gave me a shot of Imitrex (I hadn’t had it before) and it made matters worse. Suddenly, my head weighed eighty-five-niner pounds and my neck and shoulders hurt and holy shit I felt worse. I started crying. The Nurse Practitioner, who had been a total bitch to me beforehand, sent the actual MD in to see me.
He came in, poked around a little bit and then started talking a bit about “clinic policy.”
I was a little slow on the uptake because, well, I was trying to figure out how to support the weight of my head and I couldn’t exactly see straight, thanks to the blinding pain. Also: I’m pretty stupid to begin with, but that goes without saying.
So while I’m trying to figure out if I can fashion a sling for my neck out of gauze, he tells me that he can’t give me a prescription for pain killers because I’ve been to Urgent Care for migraines three times in the past year.
So, they think I’m a drug seeker.
Pranksters, I nearly died. Not in a funny way, either.
I talk a good game and I love a good joke about Vicodin as much as the next person, but frankly, I’m not addicted to it. If I were, I highly doubt I’d be talking about it here. Addicts are pretty secretive about their addictions and I cannot tell you the last time I used narcotics to treat my headaches (I did have some after my surgery). Why?
They can cause rebound migraines.
The very last thing I wanted to do was cause myself another fucking headache, trust me on that.
And as the adult child of two alcoholics, I will tell you that being labeled a “drug seeker” right there was probably the worst, most humiliating thing that has happened to me in a long time. That’s probably the one label; the one thing you could call me that would make me feel like I felt as I walked out of there. I still feel that way right now, actually.
I feel humiliated. I walked out of there, head as high as I could, and the moment I got into the car, I burst into the sort of tears that I cry once in blue moon. Harsh, body-wracking sobs.
Pain is an asshole. It’s supposed to be the 5th Vital Sign, yet so many doctors are afraid to treat it because they can’t see it; measure it; quantify it; run a lab test on it; put it in a neat little box. Chronic pain wears you down. I’m tired of it. It makes me sad that that I’ll probably never go back to any Urgent Care/ER again for fear of being treated that way again. I’ve gotten this treatment from my pharmacy and the asshole nurse at my GP’s office before; et tu Urgent Care?
I wish I had any fist-shaking, teeth-gnashing or manager-calling I could do, some way that I could turn this around, some lesson to be learned, but really, there’s nothing to be said or done.
They have their “policies” to hide behind to protect them. I’m a nurse. I understand.
But I’m not a drug seeker. I just wanted treatment. It’s a shame I can’t get it.