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Just Crush The Ambien And Put It In His Food

Monday, April 8, 2013

I knew recovery from having a knee replaced would be agonizing for Jeff, but I had no freaking idea how it would impact the entire family. He desperately needed it done, he was in constant, intense pain. Just a little hint, if you're relatively new here, click the link above and read that post. Ha! It does have to do with an episode before his surgery...and is well worth the read. It makes me laugh just seeing it play out it in my mind's eye.

Knee replacement surgery is a major surgery. I didn't really understand the magnitude until the surgeon told us about saws, hammers, pounding, bone chips flying all around, grout and all other kinds of horrible things. There was one very important piece of information the doc neglected to mention, which I think should be required, and that little tid-bit was that everyone within a mile range should have to take a class on exactly what to do with a manly man that doesn't take pills, especially any type of pain pill. He wouldn't even take an Advil.

The hospital pretty much had him doped up for the time he was there, but the pain relief wore off much too quickly after we left for home. Just getting him up two half flights of stairs onto the main floor and back to the master bedroom was difficult, but I had no idea it foreshadowed what we were in for.

Nikki and I got him settled into bed and I scurried off to fill his prescriptions. Nikki kept his knee iced, she also wrangled pillows, sheets, blankets, and a newly re-constructed knee, all in the hopes of making her daddy more comfortable.

The pharmacist seemed to take forever getting the meds ready, but in reality, it probably only took a few minutes. I knew Jeff didn't do medications, but I thought he would surely take pain pills.....holy crap.....his bones had just been sawn in half and had a rod pounded into the middle of each piece. He was moaning and groaning, squirming and thrashing about. Surely this time would be different, I was certain he would take something to relieve the agony.

The minute I had the coveted pills in hand, I rushed home, got a glass of water, took out a couple of Oxycontin tablets and hurried back to where he was. I could hear him yelling in pain from the kitchen. I practically ran to the bedroom, and there he was, tangled between sheets and blankets from all of his twisting and turning from the intense pain. The ice pack had been thrown across the room and he was yelling, crying and in a constant state of motion. I put my hand that held the magical pills up to him and offered water with my other.

"Get that shit away from me!" I knew from that he was in pain. Jeff never, ever uses curse words, ever. That's kind of my role.

"Please, Jeff, take them. You can't heal well if you're in constant pain. Please, just take them."

He pushed my hand away, making the pills fly, and I spilled the water all over him. Oh boy, he wasn't pleased with that in the least.

I tried to dry him the best I could, but it was a losing battle trying to help a man writhing in pain. So the quandary began.

That first day consisted of me begging him to take his meds and him refusing each and every time. he was "going to get through this." He was in so much pain he couldn't lie still, let alone sleep. Since he would lie in bed at night squirming like an earthworm being put on a fish hook, and making noises like a horribly wounded animal, I couldn't sleep, I don't do "no sleep." I don't do it at all. He wasn't sleeping, therefore I wasn't sleeping. I wasn't having that. Him wanting to lie there like a dying squirrel was one thing, me not sleeping? Well, that was something entirely different.

I was beginning to get annoyed and angry instead of compassionate and loving. If he would have just taken the freaking pills we would have all been better off. But, no, he didn't do pills. Holy Mother of God! Relief was sitting, un-opened, on his night stand, available to him at any time.

On about the third day I'd had it, I was frazzled, we all were. The entire family was walking on egg shells. My compassion level was just about non existent so Nikki and I devised a plan. We would crush up the Oxy and hide it in his food, and since he wasn't sleeping, we did the same with some of my Ambien. It worked! The pain lessened and he was finally able to sleep. I knew how angry he would be if he found out, so we tried our best to sneak the drugs to him. Hell, he and I both needed sleep, and that wasn't happening with him in so much pain.

It worked for a few days. He felt so much better he insisted he was the conqueror of all pain. With that came getting out of bed for a bit and making his way into the living room with the help of a walker. He felt so good he over did it. The writhing, moaning, groaning, and all around un-needed pain, yelling and anger returned.

Nikki and I crushed up more meds as he was sitting in the living room. About that time a big mouthed kid of mine, walking up the stairs, yelled out, "are you still hiding pills in Dad's food?"

The blood totally drained from my stiffening body, my breathing became shallow, and I thought my heart was going to jump from my chest. Nikki was holding her breath and I could see beads of sweat falling from her hair line down her perfectly chiseled face, there were tears forming in her dark brown eyes. We stood motionless and waited for the soon to follow anger that was going to come our way. And boy did it come. He was pissed, he was beyond pissed.

The walker went flying across the living room as he screamed, "you've been secretly drugging me?" Oh hell, there was no getting out of that one. We had been caught and it wasn't going to be pretty.

One of the other kids rushed across the room and retrieved the walker while Nikki and I stood facing the window, afraid to turn and see his blue eyes shooting rays of death at us. He yelled at the kid that was trying to get the walker, "I don't need that damn walker! I'll walk on my own, damn it!"

After a step or two, he relented and asked to be given the walker after all. He slowly made his way toward the kitchen. Every sound he made with the walker was magnified. Nikki and I stood motionless. We had been caught. We were positive we would soon meet God. 

He made it to the kitchen island, and very quietly said, "The two of you will NOT make any more food for me! I will NOT take pills! I WILL get through this on my own!" With our backs still to him, we heard him thumping and muttering down the hallway to the bedroom. We looked at each other and we both took a deep breath.

"Mom," Nikki asked anxiously, "what about tranquilizer darts?"



Furry Bottoms April 8, 2013 at 9:16 AM  

Oy!! Male pride is very hard to handle sometimes!!

Rob-bear April 8, 2013 at 10:35 AM  

There are times when a guy has to "man up." And there are times when trying to "man up" is so totally wrong! You can tell him for me.

You are perfectly right; with all the pain and related tension he is carrying in his body, it will take a lot longer for him to heal, and he will not heal a well. I have worked with doctors for years on ethical issues; I understand this this healing stuff.

Seeing as you have lots of oxy . . . on second thought, I think not. Even if it would help you and Nikki.

I hope your "big boy" gets better, soon.

Blessings and Bear hugs!
Bears Noting

Susie - Walking Butterfly April 8, 2013 at 2:51 PM  

Oh man, maybe you can rent a tranquilizer gun somewhere! Men can be so stubborn!!
When my Hubs chopped his big toe up a lawn mower her thought he could get up and go to work the next day. The Doc said, "Sure if you feel up to it." (I am sure the doc was hiding a little smile as he said this.)
Later when Hubs got up to go to the bathroom, he nearly fainted from the pain and got the message loud and clear.

But even now, he won't take cold meds and would rather drive me crazy with moaning of the pain and discomfort etc.

Don't they see that the moaning and groaning is NOT MANLY either?

Unknown April 9, 2013 at 6:07 AM  

Oh my, why can men be that way??? I have to admit, while my husband has never had a surgery like that, I have been tempted, more than tempted, to crush up some of my pills and put it in his food as well! Maybe chill him out when he's very upset about work? Perhaps it sounds unethical and I wouldn't want it done to me either, but I know you did it out of love (well, and frustration, I totally get that!)so he can't be mad for long. He knows you meant well. :)

Dazee Dreamer April 9, 2013 at 9:08 AM  

Good heavens. My husband hates to take pills too, but at least if he is in pain he will do it. I say, the kid that let the cat out of the bag gets to sleep with your hubby until he is all better. Yeah, I love that idea

The Bipolar Diva April 9, 2013 at 8:05 PM  

Rob, it did take him quite a bit longer to heal. I think he'll be much better taking his meds this next go around!

The Bipolar Diva April 9, 2013 at 8:06 PM  


He just doesn't like to take anything. Finally he is taking meds for his arthritis though! And, he promised, next knee replacement will be totally medicated!

The Bipolar Diva April 9, 2013 at 8:06 PM  

Dazee......I kind of like that too!

Outcast April 10, 2013 at 4:28 AM  

Jeff is a very brave man and I honestly admire his strength and courage. As somebody who suffered a massive painkiller addiction the thought of taking pills for any pains I get now is a scary one that I try to stay away from. He does need to get better though and taking pills to stop the pain will help that and that's a fact so hopefully he does take some soon if the pain continues, he's still a very brave man though, massive props to him.

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