Feeling Old + Blog Hate
This post is a little awkward for me because, as some of you already know, I hate blogs. Sure, they're not all bad, but there are far too many blogs that update daily for the sole purpose of......updating daily. Entries like "Today I'm bored" or "I have nothing to say today" just get under my skin. Likewise, I'm weird about getting personal online, mainly because it's such a detached place to start spilling your heart out. I often feel uncomfortable when my online friends use me as their emotional touchstone (some people you feel you know really well online, others less so....and you never know exactly what the perceived relationship is). Blah. Point is, I like to think I'm using this blog as a place to throw random mini-articles and to share random things. I've sort-of had a traumatic week and I think it's a worthy story.
Backstory: My father has juvenile-onset osteoporosis. He's always had severe back trouble and has been on industrial strength pain-killers for as long as I can remember. My father filed for disability when he was 40 or so if memory serves, something most "adults" out there think of as a rather young age to retire. Still, it's something that runs in our family and something that I've been told to keep an eye out for it.
Two weeks ago I awoke with severe back pain. As in, I had trouble moving without hurting myself. It didn't go away, so I took to sleeping on the couch (which helped actually) and went to see my doctor. Besides saying that I was 35 pounds overweight (I'm 6'3 and 210 pounds....go body index I guess), the doctor was completely freaked out by how curved my back was. Now I've had minor scoliosis (sp?) for a long time, but it's never been a problem. She sends me off to a specialist....namely a place in Berlin that can take x-rays and a bone density test. Armed with very little information, pain, and a bit of hypochondria, I went to get the tests done. Almost no one spoke English and this had to be first time in my two years of being in Germany where I really had a problem communicating (For those of you that don't know, Berlin is so bilingual that I've had a hell of a time learning German....because I really don't have to. Everyone speaks enough English for me to get by). Now, I've had X-rays taken before. However in Germany, they do things a little differently. Like what, for instance?
They made me take off all my clothes and put me in lead underwear to protect my junk. What's worse is that I couldn't help but keep laughing and making jokes about my lead underwear (I was hella uncomfortable), but the nurses just gave me weird looks....probably because I was speaking in a language they didn't understand and was repeatedly pointing to my crotch. Suffice to say that was awkward. The Bone Density test was what really freaked me out to the point of wanting to scream. Me. Naked. Strapped to a table. Table rolls slowly into a giant machine. I can see nothing but medicinal white plastic except for a glowing message to me with a giant SKULL on it. Of course it's in German, so I don't know what it says...I can't ask the nurse and suddenly the Skull LIGHTS UP as the machine starts making this horrible "jet plane taking off" noise. Sweet mother of Christ, I can't believe someone thought the "glowing skull" extra was a good purchase for the bone density machine. Gah.
The next day, I got the results:
The next day, I got the results:
The Good News: My bone density and my spine are (mostly) in fine working order. I do not have my father's crippling condition, at least not yet. By "mostly,"I just mean that one of my vertebrae connects weird, and while it shouldn't be causing me any amount of pain, it does sort of freak out the doctors.
The Bad News: I'm still in a lot of freaking back pain. This could be anything from chronically sleeping wrong to not having enough muscle mass in my back. It could also be that elves have started building condos in my spine...the point is, we don't know what it is. My doctor's getting some painkillers for it, but besides exercise and changing my mattress....I've no clue what to do.
So more expensive tests and specialists....but I'm happy because it's not what I was afraid it was.
Sorry for this long un-funny post (though the lead underwear thing was kinda), but I figured an informative thing might be a good change of pace since a few of you emailed me asking what the heck I meant by "spinal injury" when I did the update for last week. Thanks for your concern. Capitalist Pig, my cartoon character who shares the joy of giving me money and buying stuff, will be debuting earlier than I'd expected on the site mainly because doctors = money I don't have. It's fun to be poor, but I have to admit there's a downside you see occasionally.
Enjoy yourselves, and I promise to not make so many unfunny personal rants in the future.