Not so much a leap as a slight stumble really….

Pain Clinic …. Day Three.

Getting to know my fellow chronic pain sufferers…. only eight of us.  Noticed on Monday that they all seem extremely more social than I feel at the moment.

Uncle Frank
Works for pest control company, and ‘did in me lower back’ at work about a year ago.  Has a weathered outdoorsy appearance and likes to go camping, boating, fishing and can tell within five minutes of meeting him that he calls a spade a spade.  Wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of him.  Uncle Frank  is hard working, hard drinking, no nonsense sort of guy.  Talks too loud and doesn’t let anyone get a word in edgewise, smokes a lot, tells politically incorrect dirty jokes but would probably give you the shirt of his back if you needed it.  Uncle Frank thinks I’m smart cos I know some big words and medical terms.

Tracey Shoulders
Worked for massive hardware conglomerate and damaged her shoulder on the job in 2006.  Has had two corrective surgeries on it but couldn’t tell you what they did to it or why.  Obvious from day one that she didn’t want to be here.  Has awful posture, schoolgirlish sense of humour and frequently argumentative with trainers and instructors.  Complains a lot about everything and avoids participating fully.  Tracey Shoulders pities me cos I’ve had my back pain for so long.

Brent Neck
Early twenties, worked at an abattoir hacking animals to pieces and hefting heavy carcasses about all day (gross).  Had some sort of gate fall on him at work about 8 months ago and never got better.  Brent is more at home in front of his X-box than at a gym.  Waddles when he walks and giggles when he laughs.   Brent Neck has nothing in common with me at all and is probably a little frightened of outspoken and intelligent women.


Alan Everything

Pom via years in NZ, about 65, used to work in hospitality, has had a lot of health problems from kidney issues to prostate cancer to gall stones.  Battling with morphine addiction and chronic back pain issues.  Is a total gentleman and has little patience for Uncle Franks dirty joke’s which he says are ‘inappropriate for mixed company’.  Kind man, vociferously proclaims his love and respect for his wife…. daily.   Alan Everything seeks out my company as being more congenial and mature than Uncle Frank and Brent Neck.

Absent Peter
About 70something. Has done the pain clinic program before and is repeating it thought I don’t know why.  He disappears all the time and holds up the group by being late for every session.  Doesn’t go to hydro, doesn’t do floor exercises,  manages hardly anything in the gym and half the time appears to be sleeping through the lessons and lectures???  Has back pain and also on morphine.   Absent Peter probably hasn’t even noticed I’m on the course… he seems mostly ambivalent or oblivious and kinda off with the pixies.

Anal Retentive Robyn
Mother hen of the group – bakes cakes and slices to bring in for morning tea.  Laminated our exercise programs for us.  Has different matching gym outfits every day, and is always perfectly coiffed and made up.  Several abdominal surgeries left her with residual pain issues.  Dependent on morphine too.  One of 15 children to alcoholic parents who gave away/sold their children for grog back in the 60s.  Grew up with loving family on the Gold Coast and only met her bio family 10 years ago.    Anal Retentive Robyn sees a kindred OCD-like spirit in me and we get along quite well.

and then there’s me….  (I’m probably not the best person to write an objective observation…. but if I did it would go something like: )  Dry sarcastic and humourless.  Has had residual incapacity of spinal function since Aug 1991.  Uses too many big words and is prone to thinking she’s smarter than the people around her.  Has little or no tolerance for fools and has a tendency to judge people rather too quickly.   :S

It’s a leap year so I’m allowed to propose to a man today….
wonder if my husband might object though….

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