Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The first day of the rest of my life

I don't even know how to write this post. There is a possible miracle happening here regarding my pain, and I don't know how to write it because 1) I don't know enough about the long-term possibilities for me regarding this development, and 2) I am in a state of unexpressible joy, combined with shock.

  • Robert came with me yesterday to Dr. Z.
  • The three of us talked a lot about pain meds, bad withdrawal from the meth, options for the next step, etc.
  • After lots of discussion, Robert suggested "the patch" (it is a pain relief narcotic drug named fentanyl delivered by a patch stuck onto the skin). He read about it on the internet.
  • Dr. Z quickly took Robert's suggestion, although he, himself had never suggested it. Dr. Z said "the patch" would be good for me with this withdrawal I have been suffering from. I could use it to ease the symptoms of withdrawal. Stop-gap measure.
After sleeping almost 18 hours yesterday and last night, and waking today with awful, awful withdrawal symptoms (shaking, cold, brain synapses firing uncontrollably- a torturous experience), I put on "the patch". It is this tiny piece of clear square celo tape (clear tape). You can't believe that it can time-release medicine to the bloodstream for three days.

An hour later my throat swelled and my chest tightened. I felt I was going to need a shot of Prednisone or Benadryl at the hospital. But, remembering my last experience that this reaction sorted itself out without the shot, I waited it out, at home, alone. I have had anaphylaxis before and it is *scary*. I was quite anxious for a while there, but it indeed start to go down. My throat started to let more air in, and my chest started to loosen it's grip. I waited it out. My body started accepting the new medicine into the bloodstream.

Then an hour later.........

my   pain    was    gone.

Gone. My leg joint didn't hurt me anymore. I was left with a slight dull ache.
I could sit without pain, rise from a chair without pain, walk with longer strides without pain, step down on the leg without pain, go upstairs... without pain.

The fentanyl patch.
It wasn't meant to be a successful pain medicine for me. It was prescribed for the purpose of helping ease the methadone withdrawal

I bent down to get something, I winced out of habit... but the pain didn't happen. A wasted wince. :-)

Un-buh-lieve-uh-ble. (a friend wrote it that way on my blog once- hat tip to DB in NJ. :-))

The patch.
I can ignore it for three days and it does it's thang. Switch it, and it'll continue to do it's thang.
It is a miracle. MIRACLE. No pills, no liquid medicine three times a day (it was that way with the meth). Just a piece of tape on my skin, to be changed every three days.

Now we just have to make sure it is ok for my kidneys... it wasn't prescribed for [my] long-term use. I have to call Dr. Z tomorrow with this news, and ask that important question. Then call my nephrologist (kidney doctor) and get an "all clear" for this fentanyl.

Then we have to do the test of time-- if I'll have to raise the dose every so often like I have to with the Lyrica, if my body gets too used to it and I'll need higher and higher doses. That wouldn't be a good thing. Or maybe it'd be fine. I don't have enough info at this point.

I have another very important thing to say about this fentanyl patch, but it has to be another blog post. I can't get into it now... it deserves it's own post. It has to do with what my brother-in-law Larry said in a comment on my blog entry before this one. I will get to writing about that puzzle piece falling into place too, but I just need time to digest all this at the moment.

Please daven (pray) for me that this is the refuah shlayma (complete recovery) that Hashem has finally sent me before this Rosh Hashana. Daven that this is my relief. My pain is gone. This is when I need really strong prayers. Prayers filled with hope, not desperation. That was then, hope is now.

H o p e   i s   n o w.
(Did I tell you my hip pain is gone?)


  1. Awesome!! Sending prayers your way!!
    KTiva v'Chasima Tova!

  2. hodu lahashem ki tov! I am sooooooooo happy for you. we hope this will be the right breakthrough you need right now. may hashem continue to bless you with good health, joy, and love from your family, and friends! shabbat shalom! love rochel.

  3. Sarah: I'm so grateful you have some relief (at least for now!). But I'm afraid to get too excited for you -- obviously lots of information is needed to determine if this is the long term answer. I pray it is!! But at least you have this time right now to ENJOY LIFE and ENJOY your children and Robert. What a blessing he is!!! What a clever, clever man, who obviously loves you dearly. :-)

  4. Rochel-- you said it!! Hodu L'shem ki tov. It has been a miraculous 24 hours.
    hugs and blessings for a shana tova with lots of health and Torah!

    And thanks to everyone! I love all the positive vibes. :-)

  5. I am so so happy for you! Truly un-beh-livah-buhl.

    Love to all and a shana tova umevorechet and pain free, beezrat Hashem.

  6. I am dancing and praying a hopeful prayer!!!! I love you sweetheart.
    And give Robert a big BIG sticker!

    Rivka Klein -de Graaf

  7. So happy for you Sarah! May this be the beginning of a very happy and healthy year for you. I really hope this can help you get Refu'ah Shlema without any long-term damage (and not just a temporary pain relief)
    I'd love to see you soon, רק בשמחות

  8. L'Chaim to many more wasted winces.
    It should be a year of bracha and nachas (in the sense of rest and peacefulness).

    LOL (which has morphed from lots of love to laugh out loud) --- let's do both!