Sorry, This Is Not About New Year’s Resolutions. Get Over It!

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by John Connor |

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good news, indwelling urinary catheter, UTIs, hospital stay, steroids, COVID-19 vaccine, UTI, side effects, sex, Great Escape, fluoxetine, santa claus, thanksgiving, forewarned, carers, urologist, adapt, beast, poo, rage, show, THC, off

Now I know what it is like to write like Jack Kerouac and Hunter S. Thompson.

Not because I have their talent (if only), but due to the inescapable fact that I’m so high that the children’s Christmas kites flapping in the park are far below me!

Oh, it turns out “kite” can also mean a real bird. In which case, I’m spending the day gliding on thermals with the occasional swoop to the ground. Though I hope not, I’ll never get up again!

This is a tale of karma, pain relief (for now), and sheer luck.

I was involved in show business for 40 years. So it’s hardly surprising that I came across my share of chemical dependence, both as a journalist and as a comedy producer. Someone I know found a strip of fluoxetine on the streets of London, and being a reformed addict, gave it to me. I had no idea what it was till I looked it up: Prozac. Ah, I know what that is. And there it sat for about a year in my you-never-know-what-might-come-in-handy basket!

I was trying to control a recent trigeminal neuralgia (TN) flare with extra doses of baclofen, but the pain kept breaking through. I feared becoming a wraith from “The Lord of the Rings,” someone (OK, a king) who is there but not there. I once met such a person who had MS and TN. All medications had failed them, as had all surgeries. They had a band over their head. I didn’t ask why. I know how every word is excruciating.

Below is a picture of me modeling the same thing. It is the only way to hold lidocaine patches, a local anesthetic, to your jaw. They work, barely. It also turns out they’re terrifically expensive, so my local doctor’s practice prefers not to dispense them.

This is what drugs can do to you, children! (Courtesy of John Connor)

I even received an emergency call from my neurologist yesterday. I’m supposed to have an MRI, which will focus on the trigeminal nerve. Then, if it proves necessary, I will be referred to a neurologist that specializes in operations in this area. There is thankfully a radiological solution!

So, this is where the karma, pain relief, and sheer luck kick in.

Though you should always consult your doctors before taking any type of medication, in desperation, I remembered the fluoxetine. I looked it up and found that it may help relieve certain types of pain. So, I tried it. Amazingly, it worked! I’m now getting it properly prescribed.

My doctor told me it takes a month to work. For an antidepressant, it ironically made me terrifically depressed for a few days.

I say it’s karma, because I spent years helping the individual who found it!

It’s luck because they happened to find the prescription medication that so far has kept me sane.

When I started writing this column yesterday, my TN backed off, so I took less baclofen. Today, my eyesight has improved, as the baclofen makes me look through a haze. Even I was surprised at the number of typos in my copy. And I’m a terrible editor. Luckily, I work with some very good ones.

What a suck-up!

Here’s hoping that 2021 turns out to be a good year for all of us MSers.


Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.


William A Frauenhofer avatar

William A Frauenhofer


Be very careful. In the US, using a prescription from someone else is a class E felony, so guard your admissions well. Good luck with the TN.

John Connor avatar

John Connor

Luckily I'm in the UK, and as I referenced Hunter, I'm happy to live just a teeny weeny bit on his edge. x

Wendy Hovey avatar

Wendy Hovey

So glad you are still on this page. I was getting worried. Soar on!

John Connor avatar

John Connor


Sherry Bennett avatar

Sherry Bennett

I'm all for living on the edge, it can be good therapy!:)


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