“Sometimes you will be in control of your disease and other times you will sink into despair. That is OKAY! Freak out, forgive yourself, and try again another day.”
I wish that I could say that every day I felt as great as I did in the above picture but that would be a blatant lie. I have trouble now faking a smile even though I spent ten years pretending to be happy while secretly falling to pieces on the inside but not every day is great. Most of us in the world have good days and some bad days and there are those who have more bad days than good but I am writing about chronic pain and how some hours of the day or at times an entire day I am very focused on pain and I hate it. Ten years plus was PAIN, PAIN, PAIN and there were no real smiles or true feelings of peace or happiness. All I thought about was pain and all I did was search for a cure to my invisible illness. As much as my life has changed in the world of pain I still have some bad days especially when I over-do things and despite how far I have come a part of me feels almost angry at myself, as if every day should be pain free. Granted, I have chronic pain and it is always there but there are some days it is all I am able to think about and I remember just how depressing and annoying that pain can cause myself and those around me. Then guilt comes in because I feel like I am not being the mom I usually am because my daughter is used to a happy, silly, fun mommy who loves life and loves being active and I am in some way failing her (am I the only mom who worries about so many things they are doing for their child: right way wrong way and so forth?) The cycle of pain then begins: pain-worry-fear-guilt-anger-depression- then increased pain comes into my life with a vengeance yet only for a day instead my entire life. For that one day or few hours I feel as if I have failed. However, am I being too hard on myself? Are you being too hard on yourself?
It all comes back to non-resistance. I have chronic pain. In many ways I am an anomaly and I share my story in the hopes of saving as many other people suffering with this invisible illness as possible. I have found a way to accept chronic pain and manage it naturally and I have been doing this for ten plus years and my life is a hell of a lot better than when I was looking for a cure and taking medications. When I accepted my invisible illness and stop fighting it my life changed forever: for the better. I was about twenty two at the time and I am now thirty four. When I accepted chronic pain back then and learned how to manage it naturally I knew that there would be “difficult days” aka (days where I think about pain a LOT and the days frankly suck.) Over the years as I got better and better at managing pain and putting on the back burner of my brain, I had less and less difficult days and at times I thought: “Oh my God, chronic pain is GONE!” No. That thought sets my upcoming days to be upsetting as there will be some difficult days and I need to remember my acceptance of that and know that the next day will be better. Chronic pain is the hardest thing I have ever had to manage in my life but I manage it well and am pretty happy and healthy despite this illness. None of us should be hard on ourselves the way I am hard on myself when I have these difficult days. What good does that do? You are doing the best you can and I am doing the best I can. I should not feel the need to repress my emotions that come with difficult days. I should accept the sadness and pain and know that the next day or maybe even the next hour will be better. However, none of us should accept guilt: there is nothing for any of us to feel guilty about. It is okay to freak out, cry and let it all out. As I have said before, just try and not pack up and live in that despair. There are so many happy days ahead of all of us: trust the process.
“If you knew the size of the blessings coming your way, you would never worry or be scared again.”