No Oxy in the House
When I decided to cease taking oxycontin, it meant more than just simply stopping a certain drug. I think almost everyone knows that oxy cessation causes physical and mental reactions, all of them devastating and difficult. There were many reasons I stopped Oxy.
Small town, big conversations. I simply didn’t want to be known as a person with Oxycontin in my house.
This story is re-published on my one year anniversary of Oxycontin use cessation. In honor of that date, I want to share a bit of what I went through. I imported the story from my blog so it will seem a bit wonky but hang in there. It’s also the first time I’ve been able to successfully migrate one story at a time.
The story starts here:
I knew my neural pathways were damaged by the six years of oxycontin use. Remember my disclaimer: I was under a pain clinic’s care, took only the prescribed dose and went to my monthly appointments to secure pain medications. More than Oxycontin, my doctor’s care included steroid injections as well as general physical care (almost to a GP level). Pain clinics, legitimate ones like the one I went to, have to take the whole of the patient, it can’t just be pain management.
Now I have to train an internal medicine professional all about my pain levels. She doesn’t know me from Adam (who could be my neighbor, small town lol). Each visit requires me to run down, for her, what is going on with me. She only sees page one of my symptoms and illnesses, the minor irritations I’ve mentioned over the last year. It’s difficult, almost impossible, to train a new physician. They don’t know or trust you.
Every attempt to describe pain is an immediate flag (drug seeking behavior) and not an attempt to learn about me, as a patient. I’m asked to take a piss test right away, to prove I’m not snorting coke or eating peyote — like my other 62 year old party going compatriots. She will learn who I am over time. It will take almost a year for her to gain insight into my medical conditions. One problem at a time, she doesn’t see the whole me. This is why the Pain Clinic worked, they knew me, knew my pain levels. But they also pushed drugs, lots of drugs, to handle my pain.
Injections. Pills. Capsules and more. A virtual pharmacopeia tailor made to my pain specifications. I’m so relieved that’s over. It took a couple months of flu-like symptoms to get the oxycontin out of my system. Rugged, nasty stuff, this oxycontin. I do not recommend any one start down the pathway of these drugs. They mask symptoms and dull your mind.
The fibromyalgia and the herniated C3-C7 disks are on page seven or eight.
When I meet my new internist — she hems and haws and introduces herself, asking me what the current problem, the right now of my medical condition, seems to be.
“I’m here to establish a patient doctor relationship. I need a new intern, one that’s not in the next county. Your office is easily accessible and you come highly recommended.” I want to scream at her to read my MRI results from last year’s scan. Or read the CT scan of my neck. But they’re so far into the encyclopedia that is ME that she’ll rarely get past page 4 or 5, let alone page 104–105.
I tell her that I’m through with oxycontin. I’m so over Vicodin, no more opioids in this body. That I’m learning to cope with minor drugs like Tramadol, I’m still taking my Lyrica and at the new drug is Abilify — to deal with the flip side of a bi-polar moment. Or as we bi-polar people say: the creativity during a manic phase is welcome more oftentimes than not but the onslaught of crippling bi-polar depression can certainly go straight to hell.
She writes the scripts I need. Just the Lyrica, please with a side of Tramadol. I will learn to handle my pain levels through my lifestyle. Rest when needed. Cry when needed. No more narcotics. No more nonsense.
Bi-Polar Depression grabs sanity in a physical as well as mental way.
Depression. Fighting it hard these days. Makes me paranoid, makes my self-esteem plummet, makes me distrust those who profess to love or care about me.
ADDED BONUS: My asthma is under control since I stopped oxycontin. So is my snoring. Side effects rarely mentioned? Difficulty breathing (asthma) and snoring (from asthma, etc). Watch your scripts, see my other posts for the Thomas Recipe to help you get off oxy.
*Written a year ago today! Happy No Oxycodone Anniversary for Me!
Originally published at assemblagist.org.