Last night SBS’s Insight program aired Ouch! How much pain can you handle?
I thought the program was great and provided a great broad definition about pain’s many forms and the varying ways it impacts people’s lives.
As usual, I was waiting for a lead. Waiting to hear that someone with chronic pain had found a way out of it and was cured. Mrs Gleeson, I could have bet you were going to say you were fine, after all, you looked it! And so did Lesley Brydon, Pain Australia‘s CEO… how could she be in any pain?
Tonight was the night I was going to hear about my cure.
It didn’t happen.
That made me want to write this post… I want to write to those that felt the slump and weight of the thought that remained with them at the end of the program that went something like this: I’m never going to get better.
It made me want to write, don’t believe it!
Well I don’t believe it, I don’t accept that my body will remain in this rut as long as I live and I believe this because I can see I’m getting better sloooooooowly. Answering the following questions allow me to come to that conclusion:
- How am I compared to a year ago?
- How is my activity compared to a year ago?
- How does my treatment compare to a year ago?
- How are my pain levels compared to a year ago?
- What is my creativity like compared to a year ago?
- What is my work ability like compared to a year ago?
- How much help do I need compared to a year ago?
My answers; I am better, more active, having much less treatment, my pain levels are lower, I am more creative, I have sustained my work ability and I need a little less help. There!
It’s not the best answer, a year is a long time but I believe the thinking ‘It is what it is‘ as stated by Mrs Gleeson, almost allows an acceptance, a kind of peace with pain. I experienced that and from there I personally used that calm to pace me back to life.
I believe in brain plasticity, I believe in healing, and I am very well aware our brains are uniquely wired. I’ve always thought, the harder the task, the more committment, sacrifice and discipline required, and chronic pain is definitely the greatest task of my life. I don’t feel there’s another choice for me but to listen to my self, pave my own unique pain management, take in information from programs such as these and their brilliant guest professionals, and just do my best.
I believe I can make my own conclusion to ‘Ouch’… Chronic pain will not be with me forever.