A Major Pain In The Ass

WARNING: Do not read this if you are at all squeamish. I’m trying to keep the more disgusting details out of this because, well, they’re really disgusting. But yeah, some of the less disgusting details are still really disgusting.

Remember how I thought I had bruised my tailbone? Turns out I didn’t. Instead, I have a pilonidal cyst. I will not link to a description of what it is, since the description is disgusting even by my standards, but feel free to Google it if you want.

The gist of it is that I have an infected cyst at the base of my spine, right about where my tailbone is, which is why I initially thought it was a tailbone issue. There’s really no way to tell how it got infected, because apparently in people my age it just happens. Comforting.

I finally went to the doctor yesterday because of my mom, who I had been talking to because she broke her tailbone after slipping on some ice Warner Brothers Cartoon-style about 10 years ago.

She said when she cracked her tailbone, it only hurt when she put pressure on it, and that if it was hurting otherwise, I should go to the doctor, because it might be a cyst. Sure enough, I called the doctor, and the nurse on duty said “Yep, sounds like a cyst. Come on in.”

So I came in and, um, had the area examined. This was really painful, but still much more embarrassing than painful.

The funniest part was in the waiting room, I couldn’t sit down, so I had to find excuses to not sit. I ended up staring at a map of the world like I was on drugs and the continents were moving or something for about 10 minutes.

Anyway, the diagnosis was quickly made, and she told me what I had to do: Take antibiotics, some painkillers, try not to put too much pressure on it, and put warm compresses on the affected area to assist in draining the infection….

Me: Wait, what?

Doc: You know, warm washcloths.

Me: Obviously, these are washcloths I will never use again.

Doc: (pause) Well, yes.

Anyway, all this stuff seems to be working, as evidenced by the fact that I can actually sit at my computer long enough to type this out. She also told me this condition can be hereditary, so I asked both of my parents if they’d ever had it.

My dad was like, “Oh yeah, I had one. I got it cut out a long time ago, though…” and proceeded to inform me that his doctor had informed him that the cluster of cells that gets infected is actually the remains of the vestigial tail.

Of course, he probably got his cut out sometime during the 1950’s, back when smoking was good for you, so who knows what his doctor was thinking.

I mentioned this to my mom via IM when I was thanking her for telling me to call the doctor. I am not making these quotes up:

Mom: Yeah I remember dad has a chunk out of his ass.


Mom: I’m sorry you got his cystic ass, but you did get his blue eyes too.

Thanks, mom. But I do owe her for telling me to get off my (pained) ass and go to the doctor.

I’ve also been informed by everybody’s favorite conservative (Weigel) that this is the same type of cyst that right-wing blowhard Rush Limbaugh used to get his draft deferrment from Vietnam. This has to be the only thing that I could possibly have in common with Limbaugh. Unless I eventually slowly go deaf.

Anyway, hopefully I can get this relatively cleared up before I go to Atlanta, because otherwise it’s going to be a rather uncomfortable plane ride down there…but so far, so good.

The fact that I’ve been able to sit at my computer with only mild soreness for almost an hour is a positive sign. Soon, I’ll be wasting time on the internet like a pro again. Hooray!

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