Wednesday, January 21, 2009


I am slightly proud and extremely grateful that I have never been drawn to drugs.
most of the credit, I'm sure, goes to my upbringing and my genetic makeup, but I'll claim just a teeny bit of credit for my own resistance. most of that resistance is based on the belief that life is amazing enough as it is: I certainly don't need anything else to enhance it.
but there are times that I have needed something to make it bearable.
and that is when I ---reluctantly--- turn to prescription medications.
which is what I did last thursday afternoon.
I have had this pain in my mouth since the day before Christmas. I first noticed it as I was sitting in church, and I barely made it through the service. I couldn't wait to get home and take some ibuprofen (yes, I do do ibuprofen) and hopefully make it go away. the pain hovered, ranging from barely there to barely tolerable, for the next couple weeks. I began taking ibuprofen fairly consistently, and eventually reached a point where I was watching the clock to see when I could have the next dose.
after two weeks I went to my dentist, who took x-rays that didn't show any problem. we both knew, however, that I had a tooth that had been at risk for a while, and that this was the likely culprit. I left, hoping it would all just get better on its own.
a week later I had hit my pain limit, and the dental office was closed for the 4-day weekend.
I hate to ever think I'm in a desperate enough situation to qualify as an emergency, but at this point I dialed the emergency number the office machine supplied. my nice dentist called in prescriptions for a narcotic, hydrocodone, and an antibiotic, and I knew there was hope for my surviving the weekend.
enough: the bottom line is that I took my antibiotics as ordered, and the hydrocodone---one pill every 4 hours---for a 96 hour period until I could get in to see the dentist yesterday. (at which time he performed step 1 of my root canal procedure, relieving me of that terrible, all-encompassing pain that had been radiating out into my entire head.)
today I have felt like crud.
which I am attributing to the de-tox process.
96 hours of intense ibuprofen and hydrocodone must have a substantial impact on a body, and the process of releasing those toxins must take a day. that's my theory.
so I moped around this morning, barely completing the work I needed to complete, then decided that I would sweat out the rest of the gunk via a bike ride . . .
which I did.
which also brought to light another realization: every bike ride of mine is a form of detoxification. through these rides I let go of stress, of anxiety, of frustration. my body releases sorrow and loss and feelings of inferiority. I sweat out confusion and misunderstanding, and gain clarity.
my bike: detoxification machine extrodinaire.

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