Monday, February 09, 2009

Some Advice for Al Jefferson

It is with great disappointment and sadness that I learned Al Jefferson's injury last night was as serious as it looked. Al tore his ACL, something I am familiar with. As a pretty talented high school junior football player I suffered the same fate. It was ostensibly the end of my football career. Of course, I didn't have a multi-million dollar paycheck to motivate me, nor was the science of the reconstructive surgery and subsequent physical therapy what it is today. Unlike me, I assume Al will return just fine from this most unfortunate setback. The only advice I can give Al is along the lines of how to (or not to) deal with the emotional and physical toll this kind of trauma can inflict.

So Al, if you are reading this and I suspect you are, don't do what I did.

The doctors will want to give you a bunch of different painkillers as you progress from surgery through recovery. Now, you will want to take these meds and you should, to help with the pain, but whatever you do don't do as I did. Do not incessantly ring the nurse for morphine post-surgery. First of all, the nurses don't like dealing with irrational, impatient teenagers people. I guess they find it off-putting to have to respond to the pale, sweaty, shaky requests of a nascent addict. Go figure. Take the minimum morphine that you can. Man up and take the pain.

After you leave the hospital (and your wonderful new friend morphine) you will more than likely be given codeine or some such opiate derivative. Again, do not do as I did. Take the codeine only when you really need it. There are those in this world that frown upon strung-out 17 year olds professional athletes. Codeine (or any of its relatives) is a very effective painkiller, and it can really get you high, but it is addictive. Al please pay attention, it is not worth the addiction, to feel as good as you have ever felt every time you pop one (more) of the little pills. It just isn't worth it. You have a career to think about. I only had school, student council leadership, a part-time job at a movie theater and a family to deal with. I was willig to try and make it work, however I don't think you can afford to try to juggle your recovery, pro basketball and an opiate addiction.

Also, do not take your fist-fulls of painkillers with glasses of your mom's Franzia White Zinfadel. Even though it will set you s-s-s-t-raight, it is counterindicated on the prescription bottle. You have to follow the rules, that is what they are there for, or why you scratch that specific part out. Ultimately, addiction is nothing to joke about, unless you are jacked up and joking about it with equally lit friends.

Al, it is a long, ardous path you are about to go down and you need to have the love and support of your friends and family. So, please consider me a friend and take the friendly advice I have offered you here. I have faith you will find yourself fully recovered and getting back to the All-Star game-oh yeah, I almost forgot that you were robbed this year and didn't make the All-Star game. You are young and strong, use that in lieu of narcotics to make it back. It won't be as fun, but you will return to the sport that you love.


Jess said...

Sage advice. I've always been partial to Vicodin, but I ration it. I still have some left from my shoulder dislocation five years ago.

Andrew Wice said...

I might as well face it.

I'm addicted to love.

Lucy Rhode said...

RX narcotic abuse -- my bread and butter. Remember, don't flush your RX meds. You fuck up the ecosystem when you do, and you complicate drug/sewage research.

Muumuuman said...

Pain is just weakness leaving your body.

Evan said...

Very Informative Article!
Health Advice