[Tripping On…] Constipation Weakening Physicality

I wasn’t able to pass a bowel movement in almost a week that I began feeling sick today. Constipation is a side effect of taking Oxycodone, which I was prescribed to manage my continued pain symptoms related to my lower back and tailbone, but days of taking Colace weren’t helping. Well, I spent the better part of four hours and an entire roll of toilet paper, but I managed to pass five pounds of feces.

I feel much better after I pooped, but there’s a point here besides feces.

I felt the pain of my lower back – near the surgical incision area – and tailbone more after I passed that bowel movement. [I took a photo, as I did with another bowel movement that also took nearly one week to pass. I haven’t shared them publically or privately, but they feel like things to keep for documentation purposes, and also, perhaps, as personal trophies.] I don’t know if there’s any sort of direct correlation between passing bowel movements and the spine pain I’ve been feeling. Maybe it’s the pressure against my body as I pass the matter from my body?

I would take Colace more often, but it makes me feel physically weak.

This whole process is a dangerous game of recovery. Although I’m glad to have some pain medication that’s helping me manage my pain symptoms enough to the point where I can function as a normal human being again, I’m still not at the point where I have much energy besides sitting upright to watch mainly livestreams or other videos on YouTube, maybe trying to write the occasional essay like this, and being in bed sleeping. My sports medicine and pain management doctor wrote me a prescription for physical therapy, but I don’t feel ready for doing any physical movement yet. There are two perspectives on that. On the one hand, some people think I should get up and moving around, whereas others – I’m in this perspective – feel like I should rest my body until I feel well.

Either route feels like I’m taking the wrong route to recovery.

Since passing that five-pound bowel movement over a painful four-plus-hour window, my tailbone has hurt much more than it did over the past few days. I’m trying to take as little Oxycodone as possible. I’m still in the perspective of rationing out pain management medicine over the long-haul thought process I had to live with over the past few months, so even though my doctor is willing to sign additional prescriptions based on my Oxycodone consumption, I’m also apprehensive about taking too much. If I do, I might want to overdo it, accidentally, either with physical therapy or even just sitting for longer than I should, which might cause further damage to my body.

My tailbone and butt hurt a lot right now.

As I was using up that roll of toilet paper to slowly pick at the feces that were blocking my anus from passing the bowel movement, which started small and then once it got doing turned into a thick feces abomination, I felt around the area where my anus was and this was close to where my tailbone pain has been ever since my spine surgery on August 31 2020. Until today, I thought the pain was directly tied to my tailbone. But could it be tied to my bowels? Could the pain be close enough to the tailbone where I can press my finger against my tailbone and feel the pain, when in fact it might be my bowels?

I wasn’t peeing much over the past few days, too.

I’ve been writing essays like this with the energy I can muster to explore what the hell is wrong with me. Maybe I’ll have all of the answers by this essay’s publication? Maybe it will be fixed with one or two more doctors’s visits? Yesterday, I was referred to a neurologist, [and not the one I saw earlier this year,] and I’ve scheduled that appointment for Friday. Maybe that appointment, where this doctor will get the charts and opinions from the spine doctor as well as the sports medicine and pain management doctor, will lead to more answers about why I’m still experiencing constant pain? There are some days now where I wake up without pain, but as soon as I move my body, the pain starts.

Today’s bowel pain was something different.

I’m writing in this degree and with this openness as sort of a preparation for exploring this as a possible cause at my future doctors’s visists. They’ve been ruling out all of the common things. My spine seems fine. The nerves in my left foot are weak but there’s nothing beyond repair. So why am I experiencing debilitating pain? Why is the pain so severe that I can feel it through decent doses of Oxycodone – I’ve taken 25 milligrams today – and the sources of these pains don’t seem to be showing up in regular tests? Why is it that my case seems to be stumping doctors of decent education and actual empathy? Could it be something as outlandish as a problem with my bowels?

I thought this as I was trying to pass that five-pound bowel movement.

I weighed myself in the morning, with my clothes on, as I first attempted to pass the feces from my body. At two points throughout the process, I took off all of my clothes as my body began overheating from the pain of trying to defecate, so that could have also put pressure on my body. I don’t know. Even though I am experiencing everything here, my mind is not in a place where it can remember every cause and effect of what’s going on with my pain, especially now that my mind is seeking comfortable respites as it tries to heal itself from whatever terrible malaise has its toxic grips on my life.

I should be well enough tomorrow to start calling companies for healthcare assistance and billing questions…

Quotes: None.
Sources: My personal experience.
Inspirations: The main value of these sorts of thought-exploring essays is meandering around the ideas in my head until I come up with some good thoughts to ask about in the future. If I notice further correlations between pain after peeing or pooping, then that might lead us down a different rabbit hole of doctors to find the cause of my problem. I know that taking too much medication isn’t helpful because I could become mentally dependent on feeling normal too early and it won’t help me accurately assess where the pain is, so I’ve been trying my best to only take the Oxycodone after I’ve identified the source of the pain, or at least, when the pain becomes too unbearable.
Related: Sober Living essays and Tripping On [The American Healthcare System] chapters.
Picture: Template
Written On: 2020 December 15 [10:34pm to 11:01pm]
Last Edited: 2020 December 15 [First draft; final draft for the Internet.]


My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.