Written by Colleen Kerich, Pain Connection member since 2005.
I do not want to be a member of a chronic pain support group.
I do not want to be in pain every day.
I do not want to have to tell my children I can't play with them today.
I want my job back so I can be a productive member of society and have my children see me as a productive member of society.
I do not want to see the look of doubt in the eyes of people who think I am not in pain because I do not look like I am in pain.
I do not want to cry any more over what I used to be and will never be again.
I want my children to see me as strong and able to protect them.
Unfortunately, I have to deal with it.
I can't push my feelings aside any more and ignore the pain and feelings of fatigue. I have to find my way through this mess and am grateful to have stumbled upon Pain Connection. I have attended one meeting and two of the speakers series. Although I am still at times fighting against what I can't change, I know I am heading in the right direction. So far I've learned that my negative reaction to my pain is actually making my overall pain worse. At first I was skeptical and thought there was no correlation between the two. Now, I see that my negative response causes stress, which causes tension, which in turn causes pain. I've also learned that there are many people in this world who are also suffering from chronic pain.
And, although I may want to distance myself from these people, because I want to distance myself from my own chronic pain, I know I can learn from them.
Thinking about writing this article has been a huge burden today. I did it a little fast because I'm crying my eyes out and want to get it over with so I can get a shower and get my kids from the bus without looking as if I've been crying all day. I really haven't dealt with my chronic pain on a mental level but have been forced to do it today. I know the support group will help me get through this, but it's hard to face reality some days. If you think the first sentence is a little too harsh you are welcome to delete it. It is how I really feel, but it is because I still don't want to deal with it some days. I was hoping it would also kind of get peoples' attention. I know I have probably learned more than what I wrote but I can't think of anything else right now. Sorry.