A blog for (semi) athletic middle-aged men (and women) holding on to (the last vestiges of) their youth
by training for and competing in running, cycling, swimming and triathlon events!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter from the Couch Potato

Were you expecting the Easter Bunny? What you see is what I've been doing for the past 5 days -- sitting on the couch, remote in my left hand, painkillers, cough drops and a glass of water within reach on the end table. If it weren't for March Madness (Go Jayhawks!), I think I'd have gone mad by now!

My collarbone surgery seems to be healing fine. My biggest issues since the surgery have been side effects related to the hydrocodone painkiller (a.k.a. Vicodin, Lortab, Norco, etc.) my doctor prescribed and a chest cold that set in the day before the surgery.

I don't like hydrocodone at all. In fact, I stopped taking it on Friday after I woke up from a nap so disoriented I didn't know where I was (didn't recognize my own family room) or what I was doing (sitting on the couch watching basketball, of course). It took about 30 minutes to break out of this mental fog and sort things out in my brain. And the dreams I had while sleeping in a hydrocodone haze were extremely active, vivid, and sometimes disturbing. I often woke up in a cold sweat with my heart racing. I'd rather suffer through pain than go insane taking hydrocodone!

I suppose everyone reacts to different painkillers diferently, but I would never recommend hydrocodone to a friend. I much preferred the hydromorphone (dilaudid) I took after breaking my collarbone in September. It relieved the pain with little to no side effects.

I've also found that it is no fun to be sick at the same time you are recovering from surgery. What felt like a minor sore throat the night before my surgery has turned into a full blown chest cold. I'm not sure if my cold/cough was made worse by the anethesia I received during surgery. Apparently there is little concern about receiving anesthesia if you have a cold. I mentioned it to my doctor and he said that as long as I wasn't running a fever, I'd be fine. But I can tell you that having a chest cold has not made recovery very pleasant...coughing spasms don't feel great when you have a large incision in your upper chest area!

I know, I sound like a whiner. I'll admit that I'm a big baby when I get sick. I want my mom to be there to make everything feel better. But Leslie has been there for me -- bringing me tapioca pudding*, cottage cheese*, an occasional bowl of chicken soup (can't believe I publicly admitted eating fowl!) and even scrambled eggs* and toast for dinner one night. She does a great job of filling in for mom (just don't tell her I said so!). I'm sure I've been a real treat to be around...whining by day and wheezing by night. Thanks, Les!


*By the way, it may be best to avoid dairy products and eggs when taking most painkillers...at least be sure to add some fiber into your diet for good measure :)


  1. As I told Daren shortly after we were married 22 years ago and he laid in bed sick and said..."my mom used to bring me tea and toast when I was sick (cough, cough)"..."You didn't marry your mother!"

    Everyone asks me how Daren's doing; he lays around sleeping on the couch and I say "he had to have surgery for this? This is nothing new!" : )

    He's actually been a pretty good patient; now if he'll stop coughing so I can get some sleep!


  2. I might have been expecting the Easter bunny with purple Calvins! :)


  3. LOL, Denise. That was my first and last appearance as the Easter Bunny! As for you, Leslie, you won't have to worry about me sitting on the couch much after I get my new bike. I'll be spending a lot of hours "in the saddle" getting ready for RTR!

  4. Denise - I think he should put up the EB picture! Definitely LOL!


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