Life with chronic pain isn’t an easy thing, by any means. And it isn’t something others comprehend in depth.
So here are some things I would say for chronic pain
- A smile hides pain quite well. It doesn’t negate it.
- This façade is fake, the pain is real.
- You not believing my pain doesn’t invalidate its existence, just makes it harder to deal with if you mean anything to me. If you mean nothing to me, then likely you never will with that attitude.
- Just because I can do something one day, doesn’t mean I can the next. Pain is variable. It can be severe or sometimes more tolerable. It takes a lot of effort to do things because pain is fatiguing and requires recovery, but other times too much pain and I cannot function.
- Painsomnia is what we call not being able to sleep from pain alone.
- Paingry is what we call being angry because of the pain. Just being in pain and angry about it. Frustration and irritation can be taken out on others, or not. But it can be hard to shake the mood.
- You may think there is an opiate epidemic. I Know there is a pain epidemic. And the ones suffering from the opiate changes in regulations are the people in chronic pain who need pain management for quality of life.
- Pain is more than the pain. It is poor focus, poor concentration, fatigue, mood problems and fatigue.
- Endless pain is the most soul-sapping, exhausting and devastating thing one can experience.
- Chronic pain can affect work. Some people become disabled. Others have to cut hours, work flex time, go down to part-time or change careers. We often have financial instability.
- We are more likely to have depression and anxiety. I know from experience depression added to pain is crushing and makes the pain so much more difficult to cope with… your brain just tells you ‘why should you have to suffer like this forever?’
- Divorce rate for the chronically ill is over 75%. We are more likely to lose friendships as well. Because we have to cancel plans a lot or can’t make definitive plans.
- Just because I enjoy myself, smile or laugh doesn’t mean I am not in pain. I am in pain. All the time. All. The. Time.
- I am not complaining when I talk about my pain. I talk about my pain when it is Severe. You never hear about it when it is my baseline pain or functional pain or even ‘getting up there’ pain. You hear about it when it is ‘this is getting to be intolerable’ and ‘I’ll say something so they know I can’t function well.’
- No matter what you think you know about chronic pain and our lived experience, you know just the tip of the iceberg. It isn’t an experience that can be conveyed with words. The depth of it is felt deep within when we use all our will to just get ourselves out of bed to face just another day of this existence.
There is more to chronic pain than even this list. It is the chronic of it all. The daily grind of it that we Know will persist for our lives. So it is important to have pain awareness articles to share with others.
More chronic pain awareness: