That’s right. After roughly 16 weeks, I can finally, painlessly wipe my own ass. What a day. What a life! Some may say a grown man on the wrong side of 30 should not be proud of cleaning himself after a bowel movement. And those some are correct. It shouldn’t be that big of an accomplishment. So why am I boasting about being able to practice proper hygiene wipe like the cute 5-year-old Frankenstein above? Well, gather around children. In case you haven’t noticed, and judging by the pageviews you haven’t, things haven’t been exactly all peaches and cream for awhile now. In fact, they’ve been flat out shitty. The TL;DR version of this voyage to clean one’s butt could seemingly be summed up in two images taken just months apart. We went from this:
Yup. We went from being in prime shape, on top of the world to the sad owner of a baby gimp hand only seen on creatures from Middle Earth. If my issues were only physically/fecal matter related I would’ve been in a lot better spot, but, unfortunately that’s not how this story goes.
So where does being fully potty trained come into play? See, kids, I have a third degree separation of my right shoulder resulting from a failure to lay the boom during a college football practice. Because of sacrificing my body for the good of 10 wins in 4 years playing as a Susquehanna University
Crusader, sigh, River Hawk (4 wins in the final 2 years that I actually contributed), I can’t reach fully behind my back with my right arm. It’s not the worst thing in the world, but it’s definitely not the best. Because of this, I’ve trained myself to become a lefty at a number of things. It’s kind of like how Ben Simmons strived to become overly proficient with his non-dominant hand, but only successful. One of those left handed activities I taught myself was the art of the wipe. I had no real other option, well, unless I wanted to lift up the nuts, dip under, and go back to front like a God-forsaken heathen. No thank you. We’re living in a society, people.
After my initial injury to my left shoulder earlier this year, I had extreme pain and very limited movement. For those of you counting, that’s two arms down, which is not ideal unless you’re goddamn Dr. Otto Octavius. I was also being misdiagnosed with a rotator cuff strain and sent to rehab it off, which made things considerably worse (LIFE ADVICE: If you EVER have an injury to the shoulder, hip, knee, or anything that you think could be serious but they want to rehab it first, don’t just sit there like a sheep. Push for a MRI to figure out EXACTLY what’s wrong – Immediately). Because of this, I couldn’t wipe my own ass without being in pure agony, as well not being able to sleep through the night for about 6 weeks. I’m talking 4 hours max every evening because there was simply no way to get comfortable.
So I did what your normal adult would do in that situation – I played video games all night. It worked out very well gaming off the clock until dawn. Gametime needed to finally stream regularly to see if Twitch/video games could be decent content that’s also profitable (Spoiler Alert: It is on both fronts), but it helped ease the mind. Playing, or rather, getting my dicked kicked in at Fortnite for hours on end was a welcomed distraction to life, even if it did almost end my relationship:
However, after weeks with no improvement in my shoulder or sleep, things started to get rough. I’m hesitant to use the word “Depression” because I feel like that term gets thrown around way too liberally. If you or anybody you know has actually gone through it, you know depression SUCKS. Everybody gets down in varying degrees, and there’s nothing wrong with that. And, like most people, I’ve battled demons before. Bad ones. Things were specifically tough after I tore my ACL and shattered my leg in college (h/t D-III sports again). They were really, really shitty after I won, then subsequently lost a cool quarter of a million during my online poker days and was kicked out of my apartment by the ex and forced to move back home jobless, hopeless, and basically dickless (you can listen to that modern day Greek tragedy – Here).
So after 6 weeks of doing the rehab song and dance to no avail, I finally got a MRI and it was discovered I’ve been going about my business with a torn labrum, fractured humerus, displaced bicep, and a helluva lot of loose cartilage floating around. Fun stuff. In early April, I was excited to finally to have any sort of progress. I got surgery and, unfortunately, things promptly went from shit to wet, Ebola infected diarrhea. I went from very little sleep to zero sleep. None. You know what helped me cope, or essentially numb myself and zone out for a long time? Pills. A lot of them because, you know, they for some reason give patients a billion more highly addictive opioids than they actually need.
Like with the word “Depression”, I’m hesitant to use the term “Addiction” because of a lot of reasons. I think mostly pride and the realization I was not in full control of my mind for a bit. But there’s no doubt about it I was dependent on those little fuckers for a period of time. The narcotics, combined with the lack of sleep, pain, and darkness amounted to absolutely shattering my confidence in EVERYTHING. I struggled to even have conversations with people without thinking “They don’t even want to be talking to me.” Like, actual coworkers and friends. Not good for business or life. Oh, and those video games which provided an escape? A little nerve damage in the thumb from the surgery made sure there was none of that for awhile.
For a bit, I was simply not in a good, or even an awful spot. You could hear it in my voice, see it in my face, read it in my eyes. This started around the time of the Pup Punk drama, where I obviously could’ve handled that, and pretty much every other situation over months, a lot better. But I was in such a dark place for awhile it really didn’t matter what was going on. I felt worthless and, even worse, hopeless. It affected everything privately and with my work, even at the office. The darkness climaxed during an absolute nervous breakdown at HQ. I was sitting at my desk literally shaking and having trouble breathing. At that time, I was perfectly content with walking out of Barstool and never coming back. I had NEVER thought about leaving this place before. It’s the greatest job in the world. But I simply didn’t care. I was in an awful spot and needed to get out. And do you know who calmed me down and talked me off the ledge? You (never) guessed it – Sir Eric Nathan himself. That’s right. My little Guardian Monkey was perched on my shoulders when I needed help the most, and I thank him immensely for that.
Truth be told, I’m not one to talk about my real problems, publicly or privately. Everybody has them, why would anybody give a hoot about what’s going on with my life? I’m a pretty introverted person anyways who likes to solve things myself. However, eventually, thanks to help from a number of people, things have gotten better. And that’s why I decided to blog about this. If you or anyone you know is having issues with anything physical, mental, or find yourself becoming dependent on something, realize you’re not alone. It’s good to talk about it with someone. ANYONE. Shit, slide into my DM’s if you have to. People are here to help.
Now, back to the important matters at hand: My rectal hygiene. Have I officially gotten my mojo back? God no. But eveyday has been about baby steps. Yesterday featured the most literal baby step there could be in being able to wipe my own butt, pain free. And the great Kevin Malone said it best…
PS – For those of you who are curious, how can you adequately clean your ass if you can’t use your arms? You can either shower, or pray. There’s really nothing much in between.