“Pain stared to spread, one day my leg would hurt, the next it was my back, slowly the pain continued to spread through out my body & I would be exhausted after only 2 hrs at work! This is when I decided there must be something more wrong with me than aches & pains.”
Words of someone suffering from Chronic Pain:
Hello! My name is Julie Settell. I am a patient not a criminal. I was 37 yrs old & had worked hard all my life, its what I was raised to do & I did my jobs well. I was primarily a machine operator. I was top of the line master operator when I started feeling not my usual self. The pain started in my left thumb, a constant ache, that just kept getting worse, I put it off as a job hazard, then after awhile, thus began my search for an answer. My family DR suspected fibromyalgia, he sent me to a rheumatoligist, who did the standard fibro test on me, in which you need 11 of 18 responses to be classified as fibromyalgia, I had 18 of 18. I was sent to another Dr, for a 2nd opinion and a MRI & CT scan, which revealed I also have rheumatoid arthritis, I had to quit my job & begin the Disability process. I was turned down 2x and went to court the 3rd, I won my case immediately.
During this time I was being prescribed several kinds of narcotics, at 1x I was on 22 drugs at one time. I got so bad between the disability & narcotics, I was in bed 24 hrs a day, drugged out & super depressed, I had no worth anymore,I contemplated suicide several times, during this time my hubby was taking over all my tasks, he worked full time, but made time to take me to appts. He did housework, laundry, shopping, bills, everything I had always done, plus dealing with not knowing if I would be dead or alive when he got home. I spent about 5 yrs in bed, drugged up & in pain. My out of state relatives would call & I would go to sleep on the phone. I was on to name a few because I don’t remember morphine, oxycontin, oxycodone, fentynal patches, fentynal suckers, xanax bars, valium, cymbalta, savella, prednisone, this is just a few I can remember.
I went to a routine DR appt. & the nurse took my pulse, immediately got the Dr. my heartbeats were 24 bpm, sent me to hospital right then & were talking about giving me a pacemaker, my hubby & I knew why I had no heartbeat, I was about dead from all the pills, etc. we declined. I went home & continued the pills, I fell several x’s over the yrs, hurt myself alot. I spent 5 hrs on the floor one day, I fell & I was alone, couldn’t get up. My daughter kept calling, knew I should be there, I couldn’t get to a phone. She eventually came over & broke into our house to get me off the floor. I got sick of being that way & started weaning myself off the drugs ,I went thru hell & withdrawal, for along time, but eventually got off most of the drugs, all the narcotics & seeked an alternative, which was cannabis, but it’s illegal here, there was immediate relief! So I have slowly gotten my mind & body back, using cannabis, however the availability of it all the time is questionable & of course illegal.
I still have periods of having to stay in bed alot, but that is the diseases not drugs. I am giving you a condensed copy of my story, I don’t remember alot & there is alot that went on in the last 11yrs, I have to thank my hubby for staying with me, I tried to give him an out ,several x’s, he didn’t deserve this, he promptly told me we married for better or worse, we’d had better & this was the worse. I still am on a few non-narcotic meds, fibro pills & depression, the pain Dr. has been letting me get away with cannabis in my system for 3 months now, he gave me an ultimatum last time to get off the weed, or he’ll discontinue what I am on, he has no problem with medicinal cannabis except its illegal. So I don’t know what to do now, I nave about 2wks to decide, I think I will choose cannabis, this is a short story of the past 11 yrs, I still fall often, I truly don’t know what to do!! Thanks for listening & wish me luck , thank you. – JULIE SETTELL