Pain

There is something about pain that is so hard to deal with. Anyone that suffers from any kind of chronic pain condition might understand what I'm saying, but of late, it's something I've found to be has to deal with.

First off, when you tell someone you're in pain, straight away there's the whole faith part of it. You can't see pain, so when you tell people you're in agony, they either believe you or they don't. I find that one of the hardest parts to cope with - thinking people don't believe me. You wonder if people think you're just making excuses, or trying to get out of something, or just trying to get sympathy...

I hate feeling like that. I hate it wondering if people are inwardly rolling their eyes, "Dan's claiming to be in pain again..." or that they think I'm being lazy and just want to stay on the sofa. Then there's the "Well you've just done X, Y or Z - it can't be THAT bad!" attitude of people. No, my pain isn't gone. More manageable at that point maybe, or I'm just pissed off and NEED to do something, and pushing through it... That doesn't mean I can do it all the time, and usually I end up feeling even worse than before.

Trying to explain pain to someone - be it a friend, family member, or medical professional - is so difficult. The 1-10 scale is kind of bizarre. The type of pain is really hard for me to explain in terms that it makes sense. I sometimes try to explain one of my pains like "hot water being poured down my leg" but that doesn't cover it. If you poured hot water down your leg, yes it would hurt, but it wouldn't be what I'm feeling. Cramping pains, stabbing pains, sharp pains, throwing pains, burning pains, shooting pains... If you think about it, none of these make sense. But then, if I try explaining it like someone is crushing my muscles, or grinding my bones together, that's literally the only way I can describe it, but it's never accurate.

The worst part is how pain affects a person - and I'm sure it is different for everyone. Pain is tiring. It wears you down, gets on top of you, and affects you mentally. Some days, I hurt so much, it makes my cognitive jumble seem worse. I used to be a healthy, active person, and the pain I feel reminds me I never used to feel like this. I could go somewhere, charge around all day, get home, cook, have friends over, play games til the middle of the night, have a few hours sleep, walk to work... And on and on. Now, my pain is always there, always on, always reminding me that I can't do what I used to do - let alone, I can't do what I WANT to do. Getting out of bed, getting dressed, walking down a half dozen stairs... My pain adds to my exhaustion. And yet, despite how I feel, I worry that people see me sitting on the sofa as a sign of me being lazy, that I did X earlier, therefore I should be able to do Y...

This last week-and-a-bit has been rough, which has made me sleep less than usual and be busier than usual. Today, I am literally running on fumes. I have been dropping stuff, spilling things, bumbling and bumping into things. I'm tired and feel like crap.

But, despite this, I'm upright, sat on the floor playing with Poppy, while My Little Pony is on (again). I just wish people understood a little better that when I (or anyone that suffers) say they're in pain, there is so much more to it than just an achey limb or whatever.

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