My Shoulders Suck
Here is some more medical buffoonery that yours truly has enjoyed over the past two months. I know we need doctors and the establishments that feed and support them. I just wish all of that wasn’t so necessary…
By now you well know that everything sandpapers my balls, and this month I have more for you. The interesting thing about this edition of sandpaper is that it’s not quite my balls being sandpapered, not exactly. No, today my shoulders hurt, and I’ve learned why: torn rotator cuffs. All right, I suppose you could say my shoulders are sandpapering my balls, but… okay, I’ll move on.
Flash back two years. I get twinges of ouch from my shoulders now and then. Over time, the twinges grow into full-on gasp-producing shocks of pain. Finally, while doing some pushups (Army shit, yo’) in my kitchen, something pops and I examine my cheap vinyl floor’s state of cleanliness at close range. This is a problem. Luckily I was within my ‘good’ arm’s reach of the fridge so I could pour beer in it and make it better. Sort of.
This time, things didn’t get better. Later on, after I slipped on sheet ice and body-slammed myself, the other shoulder was toast. I realized I’d have to face my old Nemesis: Army Doctor. Please believe me when I tell you that this shit is just never easy.
One aspect I hate is the CYA (Cover Your Ass) questionnaire I fill out every time I go for a follow-up appointment. Here’s a sample of some of the questions and answers:
SEX: – That would be great.
DO YOU USE TOBACCO PRODUCTS? – Yes.
HOW MUCH TOBACCO PER DAY? – Lots.
HAVE YOU FELT DEPRESSED OR SAD LATELY? – Yes, see question about sex.
DO YOU DRINK ALCOHOL? – No, I guzzle it.
ARE YOU IN PAIN? – You’re asking me this in an orthopedic clinic?
Thus far, I’ve suffered through this questionnaire seven times. Nobody seems to notice my Rantalicious answers. Either that, or nobody will have sex with me. I’ve been examined, tested, x-rayed, and MRI’d. I will admit that the MRI turned out to be a really great experience. The technician loved me.
TECH: Have you removed all metal objects from yourself?
RANTS: I think so.
TECH: You think so? Do you need to check?
RANTS: No, I just don’t know if that alien anal probe thing is actually metal or not.
TECH: *rolls eyes* Okay lay back and remain perfectly still.
RANTS: Can I take a nap in there?
Each shoulder took twenty minutes while the MRI gadgetron did its thing. I took a nap, which was very restful. The tech noted that nobody had ever fallen asleep in an MRI before in his experience. I remarked that it was a lot like a coffin, but much louder.
The last visit introduced me to ‘my’ orthopedic surgeon, who blew into the room and declared both of my rotator cuffs to be toast. He then noted I’d have the arm in a sling for five weeks and described the procedure.
SURGEON: How did this happen?
RANTS: Well the first one I was drunk and tripped while dragging a tree branch back to make into firewood.
SURG: Uh huh. And your left one?
RANTS: I was drunk and slipped on that ice we had back a month or so ago.
SURG: Hmm. I’m seeing a trend related to self-medication.
RANTS: Cool, you’re a psychiatrist too! You can help me with this violent temper triggered by my PTSD.
RANTS: So I guess this sling deal means no jacking off, doesn’t it?
I’m not looking forward to being half-dicapped on alternating sides of my body for a total of ten weeks. Then again, I’m getting sick of waking up because I’m sleeping on my shoulder. The popping sounds that come from the joints when I stretch are beginning to make mom sick, too. Wish me luck. This is going to get interesting.