"Never own a disease. Reduce the amount of time you talk about it. Refuse to allow illness a place in your consciousness." RawforBeauty.com Every time I read this it stops me in my tracks just as pain can stop me. I think about this and work on it daily in order to thrive. When my … Continue reading Our Words and Chronic Pain
Do you have to keep doing all the holiday traditions? What is most important? Is it your family? Is it your friends? Buying presents? Wrapping presents? Stuffing stockings? Decorating? Cooking? Cleaning? Caring for the emotional health of everyone else? Making sure that you are the Martha Stewart of the annual parties you host? Volunteering at … Continue reading Holidays and Chronic Pain
I am in several online support groups for Trigeminal Neuralgia and Occipital and Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia. I have learned so much about these conditions, what gives relief, and what procedures have been successful for others because I joined five years ago. When my brain surgery was scheduled, I logged into the Trigeminal Neuralgia group and asked … Continue reading Chronic Pain Support Groups?
The number one thing you can do for pain relief. Distraction helps move us away from catastrophizing every ache and pain. “… it appears to involve competition for attention between a highly salient sensation (pain) and consciously directed focus on some other information processing activity.” How Does Distraction Work in the Management of Pain? Think … Continue reading Distraction is the Most Powerful Analgesic
I recently had brain surgery to cure Trigeminal, Occipital and Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia. My husband and I had the luxury of going to the beautiful Oregon Coast for five days just before my procedure. The night before, we went to the Oregon Symphony with my parents, sisters, and brothers-in-law to listen to Motown songs. I was … Continue reading Brain Surgery
Last month, I got to see two of my long-time girlfriends that I have known since 1997. You know. The kind that distance and time do not matter and when you get together it is as if no time has passed. This was not only good for my soul, but it was amazing how this … Continue reading Friendship Distracts From Chronic Pain
Without any notice, my neurologist of nearly three years quit. I was assigned to a new one and six months later the entire practice was no longer covered by my health insurance plan. I had to find a new neurologist! I had to find a new neurologist. The doctor did not have recommendations for me. … Continue reading Track Your Chronic Pain Health History
I retired from being me. At the beginning of the pain, I was just trying to get through each day. I went from doctor to doctor trying to figure out what was wrong with me while still living, working, volunteering, partnering, laughing and doing activities of daily life. I updated websites and kept books for … Continue reading I Retired From Who I Was Because of Chronic Pain
Note that it is probably too soon to see the advantages if you have just been diagnosed with chronic pain. Trust me. I live with a number of persistent pain diseases. There will come a time when you can’t help but reflect on the changes you have made. In the initial frantic days of getting … Continue reading The Benefits of Chronic Pain
Pain Does Not Equal Harm! What? I admit that this was one of the hardest things for me to understand. How can that be? But I have nerves that are spasming. How is this not damaging them? Are you sure they are not getting torn each time this happens? No? A migraine is a great … Continue reading Pain Does Not Equal Harm with Chronic Pain
I did not say, “Cures Chronic Pain.” I have permanent incurable diseases however; I am healed more every day by the actions I take. This morning I sat in my room. I slowly wrote down things I was grateful for. The first two were about friends I saw this week. You know, those soul sister … Continue reading Gratitude Heals Chronic Pain
A quick blog today. My video of my TN story posted today on the US Pain Foundation's site. Click here to view the video. Please know that there are many organizations putting research dollars into your chronic pain disease and offering helpful ideas on how to thrive in your daily life. I am thinking of … Continue reading Trigeminal Neuralgia and Chronic Pain
In honor of attention being focused on those who live with chronic pain, I thought I would make a quick list of sites that are concentrating on helping you improve your life! American Chronic Pain Association – In 2001, the ACPA led a coalition to establish September as Pain Awareness Month and they succeeded. The … Continue reading Sites Talking About Pain Awareness Month
You don’t have to do much searching on the Internet to find good pain resources for most diseases. Leaving the comfort of your home to find credible information and support is difficult if you are in the midst pain flares. What a gift to have this access at your fingertips. The US Pain Foundation is … Continue reading September is National Pain Awareness Month
I read somewhere that “Distraction is the most powerful analgesic of all.” I cannot find who said it, but I want to give thanks to this idea. The Action of Distraction When I am really focused on something and especially if I am laughing, my pain is not as strong. Sometimes, I don’t notice it … Continue reading Distraction and Chronic Pain
Too Many Cliches I have heard the following clichés during my years with chronic illnesses: You attracted this for a reason. Think positive. Think happy thoughts. God never gives you more than you can handle. When one door closes another one opens. Your pain can be a blessing if you look at it from the … Continue reading Hearing “You Manifested Your Illness” Causes More Pain
Taser like pains raged through my body. The Taser like pains raged through my head again. My medications seemed to be less effective as time passed with this permanent and incurable disease of Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN). I told others that it felt like a Taser was shot into my head. People with neuralgia pain will … Continue reading Tasers, Metaphors and Chronic Pain
Scan Your Body I was having lightening like stabs and jolts in the left side of my head, and jaw and eye and I automatically started scanning my body. This is a process I learned over 25 years ago when I was first diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. The goal was to notice what was happening in … Continue reading Scan Your Body to Reduce Chronic Pain
My longtime friend was telling me about another procedure she had for her bladder. She spent the last few years dealing with the after effects of cancer and radiation. She said with her usual good humor and sarcasm, “Well at least I have a family camping trip coming up. Silver linings!” I woke up the … Continue reading Chronic Pain and the Silver Linings
The recent flare was gone... As I opened my eyes this morning, I knew the recent flare was gone. The low burning and ache that is always with me was still there, but the last three day's assault to my body and psyche had dissipated. It started three days ago. First the splotchy itchy arms, … Continue reading Flares and Chronic Pain
"The problem with complaining about your health is that it tends to draw us to the actual experience of illness..." A complaint Free World Language is everything to me. The way I think and speak and especially the way I talk to myself about pain becomes ever more important. Over the years, I have worked … Continue reading I am not ill. I just have chronic pain.
“Can you accept that your pain is permanent and incurable?” asked my Acceptance and Commitment therapist during our second session. Permanent and incurable? I felt the question in my gut. Heavy. Weighty. Dark. Sticky. As if a shadow had run across my whole being in that moment and landed in my gut. Acceptance of what … Continue reading Is Your Chronic Pain Permanent and Incurable?
You did not ask for this. You did not attract this. You owe no karmic debt. You simply have chronic pain. Do not add more punishment to what you are already going through or allow others to chastise you with their words. When I got diagnosed with Trigeminal Neuralgia, I had well-meaning friends from my … Continue reading You Did Not Attract Your Chronic Pain
During a very loud and claustrophobic MRI and angiogram of my brain's blood vessels, I used self-hypnosis to stay still for an hour. Especially after the tech closed the cage over my face and said, “Try not to move your head.” I began relaxing from the top of my head and moving ever so slowly … Continue reading Lessons during an MRI