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Monday, April 5, 2010

Pain Affecting Life

I hear it a lot and I see it on every website or blog devoted to chronic pain (no matter what the underlying cause of the pain is): "Don't let the pain rule your life" or "Don't let the pain take over your life". Sometimes my response to that is as follows:

WTF?!?!?! are these people nuts? How can I *NOT* let it rule my life when it does rule my life? It is present every moment of every day, no matter what. The more I move around, the more I hurt PERIOD. OH man and speaking of periods, that time of the month is just excrutiating! Washing dishes puts me in bed for at least a couple hours. Vacuuming the floor in 1 room (without moving furniture to get under or behind it) can put me in bed for at least a couple hours if I can even finish the room. Taking a shower without my trusty shower buddy (chair) takes my life in my hands because my leg gives out without warning now. Cooking a meal can be pure torture with the standing, bending, stirring, lifting, stretching etc. Putting sheets on a bed hurts like hell. Moving laundry hurts like hell. How can something that is affected by every tiny thing I do, as well as my emotions, hormones, thoughts and stress levels, NOT run my life?

It is the pain that decides how many household chores I can do in a day. It is the pain that has decided I can not go grocery shopping, or clothes shopping or run errands in my car. It is the pain that has decided I can not work anymore. It is the pain that decides whether or not I can go on a date with my husband or make love with my husband. It was the pain that decided I can't teach my youngest child, my son, how to ride a bicycle. The pain gets to decide if I can go to his belt ceremonies at Tae Kown Do (I've been to exactly 1 ceremony, with my walker and was in bed the next day). When I am invited somewhere it is the pain that decides whether I can go or not. It is the pain that decides whether I can even get out of bed on any given day!

The pain is the deciding factor in EVERY decision I make and everything I do.

Living with chronic pain. The truth is, the pain does rule your life. It forces you to make adjustments, choices about every day things that normal people take for granted and just "do". It forces you to learn to coexist with it, to do things despite the pain or in many cases in spite of the pain. It becomes a factor in everything you do, think, feel, consider, desire etc. It does rule your life. There is no "not letting it" rule my life.

For me there is only, doing the best I can and hurting like hell at the same time. If that is "not" letting it rule my life then I guess I have succeeded, but considering that pain becomes a major factor in every decision or choice, it sure doesn't feel or even look like the pain doesn't rule my life. It feels and looks (to me anyway) more like the pain does rule my life and occasionally it gives me a break long enough to get something done or I defy it (like a teenager does their parents) and get punished for it later.

But it definitely does rule my life.


  1. Yeah, but you don't just sit there and play the pity game. You try your best to NOT let it become that bad. That's what "don't let the pain become your life" means...

    Of course, you knew this already :P


  2. Yes I do know this but I do not always succeed in stopping a pity party before it starts. I am human so sometimes it gets the best of me LOL

    *hugs* Love you!


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