dahlia in my garden: Rio Fuego in Coleus leaves

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Pain Reality Day - September 9th

Today is the 1st annual Pain Reality Day. It is our chance as pain patients and those connected to us to educate others what it’s really like to live w/ Chronic Pain—all day 9/9/15 via the Internet. This is an advocacy event that will take place across the whole of the web—every blog, Twitter account, YouTube video and Facebook page belonging to people impacted by pain. Don’t forget to add the hashtag #PainRealityDay to each post, video or blog entry! 

Read more about this new annual pain advocacy event by going HERE.   
These are just some of my pain realities.... Living with chronic pain is exhausting. Sometimes just making it to noon is all I can do before I desperately need to take a nap. I can't get a normal night's sleep because lying in bed is too painful, even for a small number of consecutive hours. Sitting or standing for short periods of time can hurt so much that I can't stop shifting around, which I know can be distracting or look strange especially in a movie theater or in church. I always have to have pillows to sit on wherever I go. What am I supposed to do when I'm using my wheelchair in a public place and suddenly sitting in it hurts so much that I can't bear to sit any longer... but I can't just walk away from my chair and leave it behind, because walking hurts, too? 

Cactus in my old garden in California.

Everything I do makes me pay a price in pain. Sometimes I can hide it well and look completely normal. Other times it's all I can do to struggle back to my car at the grocery store, or sit through a traffic jam without holding myself up off of the seat, or to just fake that I'm fine a tiny bit longer so I can get home from some event and let my guard down because I worry what people will think of me. 

But don't think I do not have a good life. It just takes more effort and sometimes I struggle. Even a cactus, with all its painful spines, will beautifully bloom. You have to learn to embrace joy, express gratitude, and honor God's blessings.

Note: I'm sorry I haven't been posting regularly, but we are right in the middle of our accessible bathroom remodel and with our home in dusty disarray I'm not able to live there. I will not be doing weekly blog posts until things get back to normal, hopefully in a couple of weeks. But if something like this new advocacy event comes along or there is an vitally important pain news story, I will pop in and post. I'll be back when I can!

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