I have arthritis in my hands, with my right hand worse than my left. It seems to also be in my knee, lower back, shoulders and hips. I had a bad flare up after I caught a nasty case of flu recently, and ended up with terribly swollen, red inflamed fingers. The inflammation has not subsided yet and I have been in quite a lot of pain, which the weed has not managed to deal with. I have no health care at all thanks to my ongoing situation, and whilst a trip to an emergency clinic covered the initial crisis, I have no way of dealing with what is going to be a long term issue for me. So I decided to take matters into my own hands, so to speak.
The chances of any doctor giving me painkillers is about nil. Steroid shots are out of reach for me. So I began a long google search for what I could do for myself. The medical profession has turned into instruments for torture: punishing pain patients for the sins of junkies like me. I even read an alarming study which found that some global warming could be averted (0.1 percent), if less anesthesia was used. People do not get anesthetics for shits and giggles. We moved on from dark ages where people had to bite down on a lump of wood and hope their surgeon was fast…or so I thought. Clearly not. We live in a world where people in legitimate pain are denied opiate painkillers that work, thus forcing them to the street to get relief. It is hardly working, is it? Forcing people to use street opiates to deal with pain, when they could be kept healthier if pain was not made into a moral issue, is an absolute travesty.
The problem here folks is simple: dehumanization, Christian morality and the imposition of fucked up moral codes onto people who do not subscribe to them. Drug use is not a moral issue. Pain is not a moral issue. It is not intrinsically better to suffer (and then presumably get yer reward in heaven alongside baby Jeebus). The world has gone to hell in a handbasket whilst trying to virtue signal. Doctors have become moral arbitrators. As soon as a doctor knows I used to be a junkie, then all the kindness disappears. To be frank as soon as they realize I am illegal, the victim of domestic violence and poor, there is no treatment, sympathy or professionalism for me or for The Boy. The medical profession has lost its heart.
Speaking to people I know who are on the streets, or living in shelters they all say the same thing: as soon as the hospital knows that they are unhoused, then they are treated callously, and it is presumed they are on drugs. Even if they are, it is not a hospital’s place to make a moral decision and deny care, provide inadequate care and inadequate pain relief as a result.
It is not immoral to use drugs. People who use drugs are not intrinsically bad. This judeo-christian imposition of morality into healthcare, where only the most deserving victims are treated with kindness is a huge step back for humanity. Street drugs have become more and more dangerous in recent years. Fentanyl from China, flesh-eating desomorphine made by mixing codeine with solvents and gasoline, literally rots the flesh off the unwitting user. I wonder what the kind of people who make this shit think they are doing by killing their customer base? I am not fond of conspiracy theories, but this is leading to a heck of a lot of dead and dying counter-culture heads who would be better served by a system of safe supply. Safe supply has worked to alleviate social ills, crime rates and the suffering of drug users in countries it has been rolled out in, like Switzerland and parts of Canada, but it seems as if a lot of places do not want to heal, protect and help people survive, and instead want to punish. Pills are made with ‘anti abuse’ matrixes which make it very dangerous to inject or snort them. A person could lose an arm or get silicosis if they do. Still people are people and it does not deter someone who is intent on their chosen route of administration. Instead the burden on society and health services increases. The culture of punishment for the alleviation of pain, whether social, physical or emotional is modern day torture.
Still, I have to do what I can to function as well as I can minus any health ‘care’. I’ve taken up yoga to see if I can keep my joints moving and help control the pain through meditation. I’ve been hopefully swallowing turmeric pills to see if it reduces the swelling and inflammation. I am still in a lot of pain, but at least I am trying to do something. I’ve been eating a little more weed to try and get some sleep and take away some of the pain. It works better than tylenol that just destroys my already sensitive stomach. Apparently people with celiac disease suffer from arthritis in greater numbers than those without it. I drew the short straw, and whilst I am not young, I am not old enough to be crippled up like this. I am trying to help myself – I am staying as slim as possible, on a constant low calorie diet in order to try and keep the weight off my knees. I am doing everything I can think of to manage, and still it does not appear to be enough.
I will report back on whether the yoga and the turmeric pills work to any observable extent. The sun coming out must surely not hurt either. It has been a cold wet winter so far. I don’t take any comfort knowing that others are left without healthcare, and those with it are left in pain, treated like criminals for needing pain relief, and their medical concerns not addressed because they are only on shitty medicare healthcare. I would be grateful even for medicare, to be frank, but that is not going to happen. A homeless friend of mine, who has painful medical problems, but is not currently addicted commented that she is considering doing a little street drugs, testing dirty and going on the methadone program simply for pain relief. I felt absolutely devastated for her. How soul destroying for that to be the only option, and then for society to look at her like a lesser, an undesirable. How sad that going on a methadone program might be her only route to relief and the ability to move around and live her life.
Yoga and turmeric are hardly ideal options, but lets hope they work. I promised I would give both a month before I make any judgements on their effectiveness. I can hardly move the fingers on my right hand. I play guitar still, since it is my strumming hand which is worse, but it hurts like heck. I suppose no one ever said that life was going to be fair, but this all seems like an indignity too far.