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