Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 900-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 31st year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Do we Heal?

I had an accident about six weeks ago while I was working out in my home gym.  Somehow I'd gotten tangled in a stretch band and found myself on the floor with three broken ribs and a few other scrapes and bruises.

I usally don't go to hospitals or doctors but my ribs were hurting so bad that I found myself in the waiting room of a nearby urgent care around 15 minutes later.  After x-rays of different parts of my body  the doctor came from his office with  a smile.

"I've got good news and bad news," he said.

"Give it to me," I replied,

"The bad news is that you have three broken ribs and there's nothing I can do to heal them but let nature take its course."

"And the good news?"

"The good news is that I can give you somedthing for the pain.  And you'll be better in about six months/"

So he handed me a couple of prescritions and I went to Walgreens to have them filled.

I hadn't asked him what he gave me.  And it was only when I picked up from the drug store that I noticed what they were:  a dozen oxycodone (percocet) and a dozen 800 miligram Ibuprofens.  

Since I've been sober 30 years I wasn't worrying about relapsing on the opiods.  In 2004 I had stomach surgery and wouldn't take the fentynl they were giving me for pain until I spoke to my sponsor.  He explained to me the obvious: that pain medication had legitimate uses other than for partying in our addictions.  And I came through that okay.

So I took the prescribed amount of the Percocet and went to bed, expecting the pain to subside.  Instead I awoke at 3:00 am in pain and a little nauseous.  I took another tablet and went back to sleep but woke up still nauseous and still in pain.  I switched over to the Ibuprofen 800s and the pain went away.  Today I still have 10 of the percocets in my medicine cabinet and half of the Ibuprons,

I write this because I'm wondering if any other opiate addicts have been prescribed opiates but had bad experiences with them?  It  makes wonder if we become immune to the pleasureable effects they once had on us?  Please comment if you have,

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