I posted this on Facebook today:
Some cultures are superstitious about the number 4 because it is a homophone of "death" in their languages.
Yesterday I had the 4th right-side genitofemoral nerve block that immediately took away my pelvic pain. But none of the 3 previous right-side blocks have resulted in continued relief of my right-side pain. And while my left-side pain is still low, the right side turns out to be the main dragon down there.
What that means medically = a lot of big words.
What it means personally = we die & are reborn many times over the course of our lives. These years of pelvic pain have seemed to be cycles of death without rebirth. Every time I think I have finally completed a cycle of death, I resuscitate to something that is not quite life. The pain is still there, and I am still in every moment managing it while carrying out the actions of a living thing.
Let 4 be worthy of superstition. Let it be synonymous with death; let my pain respond to the steroid this time and, if complete relief is impossible, let it at least lessen to some degree. Give me space to forget once in a while that I have pelvic pain. Moving around yesterday while the lidocaine was still in effect, I remembered how easy it is to get off the couch, to step over the cat, to do all the daily functions I force my body through. I am willful; I am proud; I do things my pain doesn't like because if I can't kill it, I can at least tell it to fuck off by ignoring how it whines. Maybe I should be more careful with it, but I am too angry. If it is a dragon, I am one too.
If I manage to kill my pain someday, I don't know what my life will look like. Pain and anxiety are by now my life's ballasts; I don't know if there is anything else holding its shape. If I crush both, will I fly up like a feather? How will I reconstitute into something stable and alive? If I don't look to the other side, where I am rid of these things, will they ever leave me? Are they still here only because I am too afraid to let them go?
I just want to add a few notes.
- This is actually right genitofemoral block #................ 7? But only 3 previous right genfem blocks caused immediate pain relief.
- The skin at the site of the nerve block was still numb this morning, and even tonight when I removed the band-aid (I always forget to remove them) it felt numb in a subtle way. I think the doc numbed the site extra extra extra well this time as I can usually feel the nerve block needle poking around and the actual block usually hurts as a consequence. I couldn't feel it at all yesterday -- just the slight pressure of it moving into place. The doc, as usual, let me watch the needle move around on the ultrasound screen as he injected the block. I think it would make some people sick, but it calms me down.
- The site of the block has, at the same time, been very sore all day, and it seems to be getting worse. I'm watching for infection. The pain is mostly with movement.
- Peeing this morning was still mostly pain-free, but shortly after I got out of the shower, my pain shot up like a firecracker. It's been up and down all day. The pain is still almost entirely on the right side.
I'll keep you posted about progress.