Coffee heat rising

Pain Pain Pain

So while Cassie the Corgi was in her last days, I had to lift her up, carry her outdoors, and set her down, then lift her up, carry her indoors, and set her down. Because she slept on the bed and was too small to jump up or down (even if she had that much strength at the end, which she did not), I had to lift her onto the bed and left her off. She weighed about 23 pounds. That’s not much, of course. But she had a habit of arranging herself in awkward positions, just out of reach on the bed. Upshot: I wrenched my back, but good.

At one point I felt something tear and thought “oohhhh shit!”

Falling and spraining my wrist did not help things. I expect the fall probably added to the back injury.

At any rate, it hurts a lot: enough to be disabling. Yesterday I had to beg off a volunteer chore because I can’t even begin to lift things. Experience shows that doctors can do little for back pain, so I suppose there’s no point in wasting my time traipsing across town to see Young Dr. Kildare. I’m allergic to aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen these days, so there’s basically nothing anyone can do. Whiskey works pretty well, as does wine. Or a couple of beers. A long soak in a tubful of hot water. Applying a heating pad. Tincture of time…

It’s nowhere near as bad as the time Anna the German Shepherd put my back out, thank gawd. Holy mackerel!

Anna was only a few months old at the time. She had already displayed her life’s ambition: to bring down a car or truck by the oil pan. This, she passionately desired. Even as a pup, she was a very powerful dog, fully capable of dragging a 130-pound woman into the road.

This one time, I had taken her for a walk in the ’hood, which means I’d taken her for a linear wrestling match. Without thinking about the fact that we were approaching the height of the rush hour, I turned onto Feeder Street NW, which runs through our neighborhood on its route all the way from Gangbanger’s Way to the state capitol downtown. Despite stoplights that last an eternity, many people prefer to drive through the city on this street because it’s less hectic than the main drags.

As we turned north, I realized a steady stream of vehicles was sailing past us…and so did Anna. Within a couple minutes, she realized she was in Predator Heaven, and she went bat-sh!t berserk trying to catch the cars whizzing past us. To avoid being yanked into the traffic, I had to pick her up and carry her back to another street deeper into the neighborhood.

She weighed about 40 pounds by then, I think. WhatEVER: she was too heavy for me to carry around, and certainly not to haul some blocks. I didn’t realize how badly this antic had hurt my back until, some hours later, I almost passed out from a surge of pain. When I sat down, I couldn’t get up. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced such extravagant pain, before or since.

SDXB, who was living with me at the time, called 911. Paramedics showed up, loaded me onto a gurney, and carried me off to the hospital in an ambulance.

There they treated me by injecting me with ibuprofen or acetaminophen — don’t remember which. I had not yet developed the interesting sensitivities to these drugs, and so it worked without killing me. Today, that would be highly ill advised…

So that leaves booze and hot baths as the only analgesics. I guess I could go to one of those marijuana quacks and get a fake “prescription” to buy some dope. But I have a feeling that might be ill-advised…

At any rate, I’m getting damn tired of this. It’s been two weeks since Cassie was despatched to her Maker, and I’m mighty tired of hurting. But…apparently it can take six to ten weeks(!!) to get over a sprain. It looks like a month or so is more typical…but wow! That’s a long time to go with this kind of pain, especially when there’s no one around to do the household tasks.

4 thoughts on “Pain Pain Pain”

  1. Have you heard of the tennis ball massage? I was having back spasms last month, so became so desperate I tried it. You use the tennis ball by standing with the ball between you and the wall, then use the ball to massage sore spots. It helped me when OTC painkillers didn’t.

    • Yes, I’ve used that often for the occasional back spasm. But am not sure that it’s a good idea to do that if there’s an injury in there…with the aging bones, I could have cracked a rib in the process of wrestling with the dog’s weight.

      Just not sitting in one position for a long time (such as the 2 1/2 hours I just spent on tax paper…) really helps a lot. O’course, the tax paper itself constitutes a pain in the back… 😀

  2. Have you had your bone mass tested recently? Hopefully, it’s not a compression fracture!

    “Spinal Compression Fractures

    This is a break of one or more of your vertebrae, the small bones in your spine. If you have osteoporosis, sometimes just the simple act of bending over, coughing, or lifting something heavy may cause it.”

    • That thought also crossed my fevered li’l mind. Yes, I do have osteopenia. That is different from osteoporosis: check this out:

      Also, the pain is not in the back per se. It’s on the left side, where I lifted the dog all the time. If there’s a fracture attributable to fragile bones, it could be a cracked rib. However… I doubt it, because the pain gets a lot better as the day goes on: a hot bath or a few physical therapy exercises make a big difference. Since I can’t take NSAIDs and decline to take addictive pain-killers, it appears that simply getting off the duff, moving around, and applying heat can do the trick.

      And…this isn’t the first time I’ve put my back out with similar antics. I think the thing to do is wait another week or two. If it’s not almost gone by then, well…hallelujah sister! It’s an EXCUSE TO VISIT THE SCENIC YOUNG DR. KILDARE! Woo hoo! Just chatting with a congenial and handsome young man is enough to cure what ails you. 🙂

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