Yesterday, on my way home from seeing Dr. Painless I snapped this photo with my phone:
I really should have stopped at the beach for a few minutes, but I had too many things to do.
I'm starting some new pain medications (Lyrica and Dilaudid) as soon as I hit "publish" on this post. I was afraid to take them and then try to write, because I don't know how they'll affect me.
I might fall asleep.
I might start giggling.
I might not make any sense.
In any case, I didn't want to experiment on you.
I have a confession to make.
I started crying when I went to see Dr. Painless.
It's not like me at all.
I've never cried in front of a doctor before.
I did cry on The Torturer, but he was inflicting inhumane amounts of pain on me, so it was different. (Also, he was my physical therapist – not my doctor.)
I was just talking to Dr. Painless and I started crying and couldn't stop. I'm just so tired of living in pain. I'm so tired of the ups and downs and nonstop roller coaster ride which make up a life of chronic pain. I've had two bad flare ups in the last month …
And yesterday, when I was with Dr. Painless, I just fell apart.
I felt so bad.
Sorry to put him through my falling-apart-episode.
I wasn't going to write about it, but two things struck me.
The first thing was, I know a lot of my readers suffer with chronic pain too. It helps me to write about the things I go through, but I've also learned it helps other people too. It's nice sometimes to know you aren't the only person in the world who feels this way. I'm probably not the only person ever to fall apart in front of their doctor.
The second thing that struck me was a comment I got yesterday. One of YOU mentioned the fact I have to think about my "every move" and how it will impact me/my pain level.
Yes, I do.
That is exactly what my life is like. I have to think about every single thing I do with my arm/upper right quadrant of my body and decide whether or not I think I have the strength, the capability, the function to do something.
Sometimes I'm wrong. Sometimes I drop things when I try to carry them because my arm simply gives out – even with the lightest of items in my hands. One second I'm holding something (a letter? an empty glass?), and the next it's suddenly on the floor.
It never seems to happen at a convenient time either.
I also have to think about whether each minor movement will be "the thing" to set off my damaged nerves and send me into a flare up. Of course, there's usually no way to predict that. I might do something one day and be okay. Doing the exact same thing on a different day might send me into a five day flare-up.
You know what doesn't help?
It doesn't help when people get angry at me for dropping things.
And people do.
It doesn't help when people blame me for not doing better or being stronger.
And yes, people blame me with both their attitude and their words.
It doesn't help to have people impatient with me, or getting upset with me, when I have to ask for help.
Both of these things happen a lot.
I hate having to ask for help.
(Maybe because I'm made to feel really terrible about asking.)
I also sometimes wonder why it never occurs to those same people to offer help with tasks involving my arm without waiting to be asked.
I mean, the people who know me best know I'm living with a disability.
They know, if I'm using my arm – it hurts.
They know, the more I have to use my arm – the more pain I will be in.
They know this, and yet ….
Are they in denial?
Are they resentful of the inconvenience my injuries have caused them?
Are they self absorbed?
Are they thoughtless?
Are they just waiting around to see how much I can endure?
Maybe they are.
All I know is, I'm doing the best I can.
Every day with pain is a challenge.
Every day with pain is a struggle.
Every day I make an effort to do as much as I can, the best I can.
I need support emotionally and physically.
Too often, for one reason or another, support is not there.
The pain and the disability are bad enough.
I shouldn't have to also deal with people making me feel like crap for a situation I never chose and have no control over.
No one should have to live their life this way.
But I do ….
© Twenty Four At Heart