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  • Jenny Cathcart

Living With Pain Sucks!

Updated: Apr 23, 2020

For 18 years I have suffered from chronic nerve pain. I literally woke up one morning with burning pain through my pelvic region. No explanation. In fact, it was just in the last 3 years that I finally got some real answers. I still have some pain, but I’ll save those details for another post.

I want to talk about the emotional toll of living in pain. The emotional effects on the sufferer and the emotional effects of the loved ones that must watch them suffer. I know my story has similarities to others living in pain. Years of constant pain, going from doctor to doctor, some very far away and never getting answers. Trying countless medications to try to numb the pain enough to get through the day. Longing to just feel normal. Do normal things.

For me I always had a lot of hope at night, before bed. Hopeful that the next day might be the day that I finally felt better. But the next day would come and it would not be long before it was clear that that day would not be a good one either. These days turned into weeks, then months, then years. Experiencing this let down day after day, eventually takes it toll. The depression sets in and fear that this is what life will be like from now on.

When my pain is at it’s worst, it’s extremely debilitating. The only thing that makes it better is laying down. I can’t work and if I do manage to make it there, my thoughts are completely consumed with the pain I am feeling. I would also be extremely weepy during my darkest times. You can imagine that in these times, it’s hard on my family too. My husband must take on a lot more, doing the things around that house that I typically do. My kids asking me to watch them do something or play with them and I can’t. The frustration and sadness of feeling like a burden or a disappointment.

When you are in pain, it is invisible to others. You most likely look completely healthy so no one knows you are suffering. For me, with pain being in my pelvic region, I kept most of the details private so only those close to me really knew of the extent of my pain.

I truly believe that you cannot understand living in chronic pain until you have been there. For me, I coped (or merely survived) emotionally with multiple things. Family and friends that supported me, checked in on me daily, listened to me when I was upset and prayed for me. I also leaned on my faith in God a ton. I prayed all the time. Many times, asking why and other times just asking to get through the day, to have strength to search for more answers. To just be able to do normal things, the laundry, go to the grocery store, sit comfortably at one of my kid’s sporting events, cook dinner. All the things that on a normal day I take for granted.

Living with pain teaches you to appreciate a healthy body. A body that moves freely. Living in pain is why I have become so passionate about preserving my health and thriving when the pain is controlled. Living with pain never gets easier.

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