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Painfully Alone

Updated: Jan 5

In this blog I bring to light an issue that is seldom mentioned but can be a daily part of having constant or recurring pain.

She said “I’m in pain all day”.


“So, that’s from the time you wake until you go to sleep?” I asked.


“Yes” was her reply.


My work can be confronting at times, especially during the first few consultations with a new client.


So many of you who have persistent pain have a half-life, a lonely life, as many of the activities you love to do are no longer possible. But the most surprising aspect is that few people have the opportunity to discuss with family and friends how awful the pain is, maybe often a nine or ten out of ten!


Pain is so lonely, so isolating - you look fine, maybe you have trouble moving, maybe a little bit slow but there's really nothing to show all the pain that you are feeling inside.


Pain you can see


If you have a broken arm, in plaster or in a sling - people will hold the door open for you, help your carry shopping or a suitcase. But what if you couldn't lift your shopping bag because your arm was too painful, would anyone help you. Well of course not, no one would know that you are in pain unless of course you decided to hold your arm, moan, groan and really put on what could be called a painful looking performance!


Of course, that's a laughable idea however; it shows one of the major problems with having chronic or persistent pain. It's invisible!







The lonely life of Pain


Although this article is about living alone with pain this doesn't mean that you live on your own or you don't go to work or that you’re not surrounded by people every day. With people around you but the pain is invisible out comes the fake smile.


“How are you?” colleagues ask.


“I’m fine” you reply.


Pain is so lonely, so isolating - you look fine, maybe you have trouble moving, maybe a little bit slow but there's really nothing to show all the pain that you are feeling inside.



Pain is with you all the time.


Pain - my unwanted companion.


Instead of pain - imagine a fly, definitely an unwanted companion.



Morning, noon and night (as the saying goes), let's imagine you had one of those lazy summer flies, slowly circling your head, coming to land on your hand or even your dinner, slowly moving until you try to swap that darn fly, that just slips out of reach - then back again, round and round, impossible to rid yourself of the fly.


You wake up in the morning; the fly is there, when you’re having a shower maybe get some respite from the fly. But getting dressed again back comes the fly and it's really annoying especially as you can put on your clothes and trying to put on your close.


So why am I using the analogy of a fly. Well you don't control the fly just like you cannot control your pain.


Lydia and many other clients have said as soon as they wake up the pain is there, just as it was when they went to sleep. So that is saying the first thing on their mind is the pain in their body every morning.


Jean is a Natural Pain and Movement specialist in Christchurch, New Zealand. She works with those who have chronic (persistent) pain and movement challenges due to accident, trauma, and her work is of benefit to recovering athletes and people who are in the process of returning to work or restarting their sport. www.painanxietystressclinic.nz




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