Friday, July 13, 2012

It's Friday, Time to Dance

A year ago today, I severely dislocated my shoulder diving back to second base in a softball game. I am by no means the toughest person in the world, but I've broken a lot of bones in my day and gone through plenty of injuries. Typically, I deal with pain extremely well.

In fact, my senior year of high school I broke off a piece of my collar bone on both sides playing football with my friends, kept playing one-armed and then went out to see two movies — yes two — before I got home and my dad demanded to take me to the hospital. In hindsight, that was just being a stupid teenager, but nonetheless, my pain tolerance historically has been pretty high.

However, the second I hit the base, I felt an intense pain. Once the ump called me safe, I immediately bounced up, jogged off the field and called in a replacement. I couldn't move my arm, and when I reached the bench I touched it and felt a part of my shoulder protruding away from my body as my arm was shooting inward. Within a minute or two, everyone knew it was separated. What I didn't know was how painful it would be. It got to the point where I was literally begging anyone to pop it back in, but no one, understandably, wanted to touch me and risk further injury.

Finally, my buddy drove me to the hospital, where I proceeded to languish in absolute agony. I was ghost white, trying to be patient but feeling like I was going to pass out. I've never been in even remotely as close of pain as I was that night. At one point, after literally more than an hour waiting in the emergency room, I finally went to the nurse and said, "I'm sorry, I don't want to be a pain or a pushy patient, but I really need something soon. I'm in incredible pain."

It was torture. I couldn't get any pain relief until the X-ray was taken and the doctor came through, but the doctor wasn't there yet — he was on call. I literally felt like I was dying. And honestly, I kind of just wanted to, that's how bad it was.

Finally, mercifully, immediately after my X-ray confirmed what everyone around me already knew, I was hooked up to an IV and fed morphine. Instantly the pain subsided and I was on cloud 9. That stuff is incredible.

Eventually, the doctor finally put me under with the stuff that killed Michael Jackson and put my shoulder back in place, and I was laid up for 6 weeks with an immobilizer and looking like an idiot in the dead of summer. It sucked.

Anyway, I bring this all up because right before this happened, I began to watch "Breaking Bad" from the beginning. I got hooked right away, and tried to watch it as much as I could to get caught up. Well, seeing as I was laid up and terrified of redislocating my shoulder, all I did for five straight days as I stayed home from work was take a bunch of pain pills and watch Breaking Bad nonstop, catching up and then continuing on right through season 4 with Walter White's journey.

Coincidentally, the first part of the fifth and final season starts on Sunday, just two days after my one-year anniversary of the most physically painful experience of my life. Frankly I cannot wait, because Breaking Bad is my absolute favorite show on television.

As a tribute to that painful summer where I learned the incredible power of morphine, spent way too many hours hopped up on pills and watched a ton of AMC, here's some Morphine for you all.

Happy Friday the 13th.

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