Thursday, August 21, 2003


There's been some concern about my recent posts, so I thought I would try to clear things up to whatever extent I can.

Is my pain getting worse?

Yes, to some extent it is. The dysphoria is a big part of that, but the pain is a big part of it too. (Where my pain is concerned, all of the parts are big parts). The limitations in my range of motion, the sensitivity to touch (even without the pain I wouldn't want something that kept me away from a loving touch), the crosstalk to other parts of my body: these are getting worse. I am tired of fighting the pain. My mood is pretty good, though. I have people who love me.

So why the sudden change in the tone of my posts?

I have been struggling for quite awhile with an identity problem: I have been rejecting the "chronic pain sufferer" identity. I want to believe I can fight this, I can fight anything, this too shall pass... but it doesn't.

I can make the effort to have a 'normal' human day, but I pay for it afterward, usually with a couple days of worse-than-average pain and a corresponding decrease in mobility. Of course, people only see me when it looks like I am doing reasonably well, so they maintain a mental picture of me that is much healthier than I really am. I don't mind this a bit, since I too have been maintaining a mental picture of myself as someone who is just getting over a sickness, a little fragile but for the most part capable of being dynamic and alive.

I know that dealing with someone who is in chronic pain is difficult. Most people either disregard it, treating the person like they always have and sometimes being befuddled by the person's behavior (such as the need to be alone, or less participation in alot of activities, or having a pained expression that gets interpreted as being relevant to the discussion or the other person), or become hypersensitive to it, tiptoeing around the person like they are an invalid. I really don't want either of these to become the way people deal with me.

The pain I am feeling drains me of energy all the time. This causes me to be highly selective about whether or not I will participate in certain activities, conversations, or even lines of thought. I've already found that this can upset people, if they take it personally... so I've altered the amount of information I am putting 'out there', to give my friends a better understanding of where I am.

The sudden change in the tone of my posts doesn't reflect a sudden change in my mood or pain or life; it just reflects a sudden realization that my interactions with people might be less confusing if they knew more about what I am going through.

Is this a cry for help?

No, this is a cry for help: hellllllllppppppp!!!! The rest of that stuff is just my life. You get used to it after awhile.