October 25, 2014

Dealing with severe back pain has just been another helpful test in preparation for the success of my future after release. When I first learned that my severe back pain was in fact a slipped disc, I became very concerned, not just about my health, but more so having to deal with this kind of pain without relying on extremely addictive prescription narcotics. Throughout the years prescription pain medication has been a major part of my substance abuse. I know that I can never use narcotics again, which is why having a chronic pain or injury such as a bad back scares me. I’m just glad I have to deal with such pain here in prison; it’s enabled me to fight through it without narcotics. Inmates are only given narcotics in extreme cases of pain or injury, but there are other medications that are similar to narcotics that are abused by inmates in the same way. The doctor asked me if I wanted to take these well-known pills for my back and I quickly reminded him that I’m an addict, I can’t take those drugs, but I did accept some ibuprofrin. After saying this to the doctor I felt such a relief, I knew I had passed yet another test in my life, even with all that’s going on with me right now, feeling robbed of some of my deserving trust and accused of using marijuana, there will never be another excuse big enough to throw my life away and turn to drugs again, I’m not only stronger than that, but I also know better, my mind is clear, the fog in my head that was once created by substances has been lifted. The doctor also recommended I get a shot of cortisol, not sure of its affects I was hesitant, but he assured me there was no euphoria from taking the shot so I accepted. It was like some miracle drug, the next day I felt much better, of course I could still feel the pain and soreness, it just wasn’t as extreme, I was finally able to get out of bed and walk around without paralyzing pain. Now I work on some daily back strengthening exercises the doctor gave me to ease the discs in my back in place and build the muscles around it. Slowly, but surely I’ve been adding my old exercise routine back into my schedule. Exercise has been a major part of my life, stabilizing my body, but more importantly centering my mind and thoughts, allowing me to focus on my other goals such as school, writing, spiritual reading, guitar, art, etc. with better ease.

Steven Dybvad


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