A Date with the Butcher
On the third I go in to see my pain doctor. Well, not Him exactly, but his assistant. In the trenches of pain control and treaqtment, doctors who treat the pain alone are overworked and drastically underfunded. The office I go to now is different from the other one in that they treat me like a human being and work with me to come up with treatment goals.
At the rehabilitative doctor, they were only interested in those things that would make me well. The idea that I was not fixable was hard for them to accept. They moved from one treatment to another in a vain attempt to ‘fix’ me. Unfortunately, this invloved me undergoing progressively more and more painful attempts. Often the practicioners seemed to be flying blind. They were just guessing, and it showed.
In August of last year, I was to see yet another pain doctor. My sixth in that office alone. Seeing a new doctor always means the same thing: an extensive physical exam and flexibility evaluation. After these treatments, i would often spend days in bed recovering; too sore to do anything but gulp meds and pray for sleep. Not pretty.
Here’s a bit of poetry I wrote on the eve of that appointment. It pretty much sums up the visit as well….
I’m Going to The Butcher
Thursday, August 02, 2007
Today, I m going to the butcher.
To see his new cuts of meat.
Sliced and chopped and torn apart,
And laid out away from the heat.
I cannot skip this next meeting,
I cannot avoid this sick call.
I Must go see the butcher,
So lean, and dark, and tall.
I lay naked upon his cold table,
The paper so stiff and white.
Goosebumps on my flesh rise high,
Trembling quietly in the bright light.
I hear him outside in the hallway,
He’s standing outside of the door.
The knob turns ever so slowly,
The sound scraping across the white floor.
He steps into the cold meat room,
He slowly walks up to my bier.
He speaks of cures and conditions,
He speaks of my pain and my fear.
His hands, they reach out towards me.
So thin and cold and sharp.
They touch and stab and they tear me,
Fillet me and cut me apart.
He steps back away from the table.
His words are both calm and warm.
Amazing the pain he can cause me,
When he once swore to do me no harm.
I now lay alone on the table.
The paper all soaked, matted, torn.
I tremble and shake from the fever,
Of the ravaging I have just borne.
My clothes I slowly pull on me.
My feet finally head to the floor.
“Next month?” asks the nurse as she helps me
Slowly crawl my way out of the door.