The Curse of Chronic Pain

My youngest sister suffers from Multiple Sclerosis. This means she is in constant pain. However, being from the same family, she is a determined, stubborn woman. I know that the pain has to affect her mental state, but she always appears to be Mrs. Happy Pants.

But, I know. Behind her smile, and happy-go-lucky attitude, there is a mood that is trying to take over. Depression.

I have chronic pain that I’m choosing to ignore, but it’s messing with my mind. There are aches and pains of becoming older, and I know if I go to the doctor, I will probably be sent to physical therapy. I get it, I have to keep my body strong, by exercising, I can do that at home, and I have had success when I’m consistent.

There is another pain I’m ignoring. There is nothing more frustrating than going to the doctor, and she can’t find a source of my pain, or figure it isn’t necessary to see a specialist. Or, I see a specialist and there is no evidence that something is amiss—therefore, I’m done. But the pain continues. Hypochondriac comes to mind for me.

It’s one of the belittling thoughts I allow to run through my head.

I have fought my thoughts, believing that every little body ache doesn’t equal a new cancer developing. Therefore, I delay a visit to the doctor, because I doubt myself, believing that perhaps, I am a hypochondriac. I have bi-yearly scans of my lungs, but these scans don’t cover my complete liver, kidneys, colon, or the female bits. I know that I’m healthy until I know different.

I also hate going from “ist” doctor to “ist” doctor.

I advocated for myself when that lung nodule was found, because that was before I became a fragile mess. I was in a more normal emotional state. I had extreme anxiety, and was depressed on and off, but I was strong, determined, and I wasn’t going to be brushed off.

That diagnosis of cancer destroyed me. The loss of my sister kept me at the bottom.

So, I’m going to suck it up, pull up my bootstraps, and visit my doctor again, because the chronic pain is bringing me down. Just like the depression, I’m trying to hide my pain from others.

My point is, there is a connection between chronic pain and the effect it has on the brain. I believe most doctors understand this, but I wonder how many poo-poo my pain because I suffer from mental illness. (Another one of my skewed thoughts)

This is simply my thought, and I know that I shouldn’t worry about going to the doctor, again, for the same symptom I complained about two months ago. There’s a little thought that I believe it’s all in my head. However, now is when I have to draw upon my stubbornness. I fought hard to become mentally stable. My hesitation isn’t going to destroy all that hard work.

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About April

I'll come back to this when I find out who I really am. I've been through some extremely rough patches but they have made me a better person. I blog if my brain is functioning first thing in the morning.
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15 Responses to The Curse of Chronic Pain

  1. hotzstories says:

    Thank you for sharing this.

  2. suzjones says:

    You’re right. There is an absolute correlation between pain or illness and mental health. For the last few weeks I have been listening to cicadas and dealing with head spins and my emotional state is crap because of it. My rational mind knows this but it doesn’t stop me from wanting to dissolve into tears every 5 minutes.
    I think you need to keep going to see those ‘ist’ doctors because one day they might look at you and say “why didn’t you come and see us sooner”.
    Baby steps my friend…..

    • April says:

      My Primary Torturer always asks me why it takes me so long–why I wait until my regular tune-ups to complain. I have learned to be vague when asked “how long has this been going on”? I hope your doctors find the source of your torture. Pain sucks everything from us. To advocate for ourselves, we have to be mentally tough. It’s a point I’m fighting to maintain, but some how, the pain keeps butting in. Wishing that you have success with your doctors.

  3. Tracy says:

    Thinking of you April. It hasn’t been easy for you. I’m glad you can share it with us….

  4. I hear you about the ists?? I am a Meteorologist. lol

  5. Gallivanta says:

    Chronic pain is hideous; all consuming. No one should poo poo pain.

  6. Glynis Jolly says:

    Just one question — could it be that the chronic pain has to do with your depression> You know, psychosomatic pain? You might be stuck in a revolving door scenario.

    • April says:

      I have considered that. I know that pain can cause depression, and I believe depression can cause real physical illnesses. My pains are real, not imagined, but it takes strong resolve to make a doctor keep looking for an answer. The pain I am experiencing is not caused by my depression. The pain is causing a relapse of my depression. Depression makes me weak, and I have trouble advocating for myself. Unfortunately, the healthcare system all mixed up with the insurance restrictions, we almost have to move mountains on our own to find the doctor who will go the extra mile.

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