A Comic’s ‘Whoa’s

I was going to call this post “My ‘Achilles Heel’ IS My Heel“.  I keep looking for the punch line in a life that is, for all of us, bitter/sweet.  But sometimes there’s real pathos.
I stop myself in mid-gallows-laughter.  Because I like the ‘Taxi Dog’ life I’ve created for myself.  Where everything can be overcome…   …   …some day, some day.  Deep in my heart, I do believe.
Some day.  But not this day. This day, I’m in real pain.  Physical and emotional.  First the physical.
During one of my many operations, I developed a bed-sore, a decubitus ulcer, on my heel, that pains me from time to time.  This is that time!!
Watch me as I rationalize.  It was really painful.  I was being treated at the UCLA Pain Management Center where they know the difference between ‘real’ and ‘imagined’ pain.  I was given Fentanyl [“…a potent synthetic opioid that is primarily used as an analgesic.”] and Oxycontin.  I weaned myself off them.  I Hate Being Dependent!!  And FUCK YOU!!!!, if you try to change my mind.
But this hurts.
I can get this taken care by Medicare‘s itinerant podiatrist in two weeks.  Cool.  Two weeks.
I question myself constantly.  One constant question is this:  Am I being brave?  Or just carrying a “brave cloak”, like Obi-Won Keno-be, with which he clouds men’s minds.  Am I an old desert hermit, or a Jedi Knight? A grouchy old man, or a hero?  A Taxi Dog, happy-go-lucky, happy-to-be- alive aphasic diarist, or a charlatan?
Tonight, I’m just an old, tired shepherd, looking for a place to sleep out of the rain.
And emotional…
My wife’s depression weighs on me.  Funny to tell you this now, when its finally lessening…   …   …slightly.  We grew up together from our teens.  Now, in our late 60’s, I’m feeling more and more free…   …   to express myself, learn, meet people, dance with life.  She also has worked, hard, at being a wife and mother,  mediator, adviser, friend to all, even her enemies.  Now, when she could be free, she binds herself with obligations and responsibilities.  So determined is she in her social role, she refuses to unencumber herself…   …   …a yells at me for encouraging her exploration.
This too will pass.  But for now…   …   …for now?  How many tomorrows are missed in fear of our todays.
And my dear and bestest friend, Fish, at heaven’s door with his new-found lady friend from Switzerland [of all places], is over-analyzing all the “good” in his life…   …   …and souring his opportunity to be loved.  Like him, and my wife, and probably myself, although its always difficult to see one’s “self”; we’re all trying to be the warrior in our lives.  [Maybe , in my wife’s case, its Princess Leah.]
Its Monday, May 14, 2012, 12:16 AM, in my life, and that’s whats in my mind.
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4 thoughts on “A Comic’s ‘Whoa’s

  1. Dear TD,
    I’m sorry it hurts so much. I’m sorry you hurt. I’m sorry it sucks sometimes. It does. I’m right there with you. That describes my weekend, in a manner of speaking.

    Pain has an ugly way of making itself some kind of a terrible stained-glass lens that makes the world appear, well, like a room half full of horse shit. And in pain, all there is to think about is how much that horse shit stinks.

    Whereas, when the pain is controlled, there is still that possibility of thinking, “Hmmm….a room half full of horse shit?? There’s gotta be a pony someplace!”

    I appreciate that you want to be a tough guy and that you don’t want to join the league of drug addicts. But, honestly, are you in the same population as the heavy metal drummer who dropped dead in the hotel room from fentanyl and oxy OD? My opinion is that pain medications are for people who are genuinely sick. (That would be you, or me.) Monitoring yourself while you take them is very smart, and making sure you’re not some drooling fool in the corner is key (because no one else will do a better job than you). But making sure the pain doesn’t make you focus solely on the horse shit is important, too. What do you think?

    H

    1. Wow!!

      I have so many responses to you I could start another blog. One thing I must remember is that one doesn’t get to the UCLA Pain Management Clinic unless your doctor has already certified you as a candidate. It was no pill-popping operation. Weekly med-checks were de rigueur. You know the drill, I can see.

      And the truth is that I was “remembering” the pain as much as I was experiencing it now. ‘Cause I was… … …well, you must already know how humbling the experience of pain is. Enuf said?

      One day, as I was talking to my truly beautiful, Chinese-American doctor, who has put up with me for 30 years, she asked me what I took for headaches. I guess she was referring to my coumadin dosages and aspirin. I said I didn’t get headaches. She looked at me like I was from Mars. But I don’t. Get headaches. There’s no will-power involved. They just don’t happen. Most headaches, for me, go away in a half-hour and its hardly worth stopping what I’m doing to jiggle the Tylenol bottle.

      But there’s a quantum leap between Tylenol pain and Fentanyl pain.

      Years ago, I wrote a little children’s story for my kids about “Wendall The Wonder-Horse”. I don’t remember the story…just the title. But your story gave me pause [and hooves] to remember. [God Have Mercy On My Soul]

      As Andy Kaufman [Latka] would have said, “Thank you very much”.

      TD

      1. Hmmmm….I wish I were TD…I wish I were TD….I wish I were TD. Click, click, click. [checking]. Nope. No luck. I still have this fucking headache.

        You are so lucky on the headache front. Headaches are so miserable because they are like india ink poured in the thinking. I have formed windshield washers of a sort, from experience, but they still suck.

        But the bedsore you wrote about was what I responded to. That sounded like one to call the pain specialist or the Chinese doc and ask for a little something’-somethin’. What do I know, though? I was born in the “better living through chemistry” generation.

        Also, yours is the best blog I read. I even gave you a plug in my blog because I think lots of people should be reading you! But if I am your sole commenter, that’s okay too. You’re the best, TD!

        Best,
        Heidi

      2. I have been nursing this question along for weeks…since I’ve known you. Because you are kind, of course, and a Fellow Of The American Pain League, [FAPL], whose lifetime membership is open only to few, and inordinately expensive; and because it is not polite to ask such questions of professionals whose time is money [much like cocktail party guest button-holing a doctor with his symptoms], but apparently I can’t help myself because here I am asking, anyway. Phew!!! And you thought I’d never get to the point.

        I know I can write the shit out of a piece of vellum.

        See!!

        But its formless. Made of thought-stream. Unprintable by Lexmark or Hewlett-Packard. It only makes sense in the language of Underwood, or maybe Smith-Corona. Who reads this shit? I just write “letters”. Who reads letters!! Do lovers still write to each other?

        My 45 year old daughter, as much an empath as exists now-a-days, texts to her new boyfriend. My wife and I, at 16, were writing across the miles, from Brooklyn to Los Angeles, for years… … …sheltering each other from our crazy families. You see/feel/hear how much passion I put into my “work”.

        Get to the point, TD!!

        Oh, yeah. Right!! Okay.

        Is there a form, other than the “letter”, in which to put whatever it is called that I write?

        —– —– —–

        I just Google’d “novels in the form of letters” and found a “List of contemporary epistolary novels”. Hmmm.

        How much do I owe you?

        TD

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