I had a full hour way for my appointment with the Pain Specialist, so I played spot the pain in the waiting room; most people attended the clinic accompanied by someone, so I was guessing which of any given couple was a patient there. You should be completely unsurprised by the fact that I had no idea so long as they were all sat-down, although I did suspect that the other wheelchair-user, who was visably wincing every now and again and took some pills at one point, just might have been less comfortable than her partner or friend who wore running shoes and a London Marathon t-shirt. Although you never can tell.
Oh, at one point I went to the loo and they had a toilet that flushed when you waved at it – you have to understand that I don't get out much and this was incredibly exciting. But then I picked up a glossy magazine about Weddings and proceeded to sleep through the rest of our wait.
I fell everso slightly in love with the Pain Specialist. She happened to be an extraordinarily attractive woman but she was also one of these excellent doctors who talk to you as if you are two experts conferring about a problem; she is an expert in medicine and I am an expert in my condition (or at the very least, the way it is for me). We talked about different drug options, which was a tremendous relief; turns out there are loads of different ways of doing this. I mean, all the drugs are pretty icky, but there are degrees of ickiness and ways of taking the same drug which could reduce side-effects and the risk of addiction or tolerance.
I can just about live with the side-effects*, addiction would only become an issue if I experienced a significant remission, but tolerance frightens me.
We even talked about methadone, which shocked me somewhat. But of course the whole point about methadone's use in heroine addiction is that it shouldn't get you high and you shouldn't build a tolerance to it. Unfortunately, it is a controlled substance which stays in your system a very long time and the doctor had the not unreasonable expectation that a twenty-seven year old might want to have babies and/ or travel the world at some future date, whatever her current protestations.
Anyway, upshot is that I'll hopefully be able to get something which is slower-releasing, perhaps even a patch (a patch would be so cool – no more pills, no drug-induced ups and downs - imagine!). Meanwhile, I've been given some exercise sheets (more yoga, basically) and set on a project to research how I might take the strain off the particular muscle which hurts the most.
Promise I won't write any more about pain or life with the Dreaded Lurgy for at least a few weeks. Your patience is appreciated.
* Although I am getting rather sick of my current diet of bran flakes for breakfast, salad for lunch and bran flakes for tea, with lots of fruit, yoghurt and the like in between. Especially as I have to take laxatives on top of that. But that's the last time I'm going to allude to my digestive system on here for a long time too, hopefully ever.