Tag Archives: chronic pain

The pain in rain falls gently on the plain.

Every morning this week I’ve woken up stressed out by the sound of the rain.

When you have a back injury – the rise and fall of the pain of which is heavily dependent on carriage, sitting and standing positions, and any potential falls and impacts that tip the very delicate balance – rain is the worst.

I’ve wanted to just not go to work, as navigating slippery pathways in a deluge that seems to never stop, is so stressful that I’ve been having panic attacks on public transport.

I stand at my counter all day and stare into the bucketing down of the heavens, thinking ‘I have to go back out into that’.

Of course, it also means my clothing and shoes get wet, and I lack what I need to wear so that my body is comfortable and positioned properly to cope with standing all day. Being warm and dry keeps the muscles relaxed and not stressed, so my pain is lessened. When I can’t do that, I can’t cope as well, and my pain increases.

Today my work pants are all wet, my work shoes are still soaked from yesterday, and I know in twenty minutes I’m going to run (screaming in fear on the inside) for the bus. I’ve already slipped twice this week.

This leads to a heavy dip in my spoons, as I get depressed and anxious and worn out by managing, the best way I can. I get jealous of the able bodied. I get angry that I was in a car accident. I get angry that I can’t take sick leave, ever.

Then I get self conscious that I’m not coping properly, that I’m supposed to cope, that I’m whinging…and so on. I get angry at the people who try to cheer me up. I want to throw a bollard at them. Or maybe a pie, that’s less violent.

Irrationally I even get angry at my friends who have temporary injuries that will heal, knowing mine won’t, knowing I have many more weeks of rain in my life to handle.

In the end, this is not a gold star week to the world for a chronic pain sufferer. I am giving it a black star and sending all this rain to the very back of the class.

And now I will go cry into my tea and put my unsupportive shoes on. /grumblesticks


One pain-free day.

Sometimes I wonder what I could do with a whole week of pain free days. Hell, a month.

Living without chronic pain means you don’t have an invisible curse you’re considering every minute, weighing each action against the consequences for the agony that can rise and fall based on what you choose to do.

I’m sick of saying “I can’t do that because of my back” and having dubious looks cast my way. I’d love to skate out at the start of derby bouts as a jeerleader, but I can only walk, sorry. Don’t look at me that way. I’d love to go hiking all day with you, but I can’t because it really hurts for a week afterwards. I’d like to have sex in that position, but I value my pain over your pleasure. I’m tired of my workmates and bosses forgetting I have a spinal injury as soon as I fail to mention it or look ‘in pain’ each and every day. I have amazing coping mechanisms, don’t you know? And I’m tired of never being offered the comfortable seating at venues by friends who know, who know! Maybe I should have a gushing visible wound instead, instead of twisted up vertebrae that I cover with a bunch of social grace.

My pain has been a lot better lately, but it is always there. I know no matter what I do, for the rest of my life, it’ll be there. It has stopped me skating, it stops me running-jumping-swimming-climbing mountains-bending to pick stuff up in my bedroom.

Fuck you, spine.

And sometimes I wonder what I could do with all the energy I’m expending on just keeping my spoons running along at a base level. I wonder, what I could do, what awesome things, if I wasn’t extremely busy being so damn careful all the time.

Sometimes I daydream about it.

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