Pain comes and goes, that’s a fact of life. Then there are pains that quite simply annoy the hell out of you. I have one of those pains this morning. It isn’t the most painful I have ever had, nor is it the mildest. Nor has it been there all morning, it just appeared about an hour ago. So what makes it so annoying? The fact it is there at all. I know when this pain appears, then starts to build, that it is, at last, time to go to the loo. Most people know because of discomfort low in their abdomen, I don’t know what happened, all I know is I no longer feel that. For me, it is now a pain midway up my lower left ribcage. It slowly builds and is then joined by pain in more conventional positions. So far so good. I went and as usual, as I passed stools, it waned as did the lower discomfort I’ve had for the past two days. The problem started when I stood up, the pain instantly reappeared and has been hitting me strongly in waves ever since and I don’t have the slightest idea why, or how to stop it. If it were anywhere else, well, it would be annoying but in a different way. This one area has been my beacon if you like, to getting some relief for the rest of my abdomen, now, I can’t trust it. Which, when there is so little of your body left that you trust, makes it extremely annoying.
We all think that we know our bodies, but once yours has proven itself to be so untrustworthy and to be actually attack itself, you question everything that it does from there on. At first, you don’t have that much to deal with, pain, dizziness, brain fog, which I admit, at the time feels like the end of the world. You don’t believe that it could possibly get any worse, or that anyone, other than you, has ever had to live with what you do. Which, of course, they have. Something that we slowly learn and makes us put everything into perspective. Once we truly stop wallowing, which we all like to think we do quite quickly, but, in fact, we take at least a year to honestly do. Only then, do we see the truth, that we can’t win this battle and just as those know it all doctors, tried to tell us at diagnosis, there really isn’t anything anyone can do, other than you. We are the only people alive who can help ourselves and until we start listening to our bodies, rather than expecting them to do what they once did, do we stand the slightest chance of truly living with this damned illness.
Everything is rewritten, everything that we thought we knew, like legs, carry us from A to B and don’t collapse without warning, is no longer true. There isn’t an inch of our bodies that from that day forward, we can trust. It’s not all going to go instantly, no that would be too easy. Our bodies have become the ultimate trickster, not even the Norse god Loki could have thought up what lies in store, and we’re right in the middle of it, just a speck inside a brain that’s attached to a nightmare. We have to accept that the life we had before is gone and we are like newborns, starting again, writing our own manual on how to live, and that manual may have to be rewritten over and over again. It is honestly that personal, what is wrong with me, is one version of that manual, and for every single person who shares one or more of my conditions, there is an equally unique manual being written. Without a doubt, we can help each other, without any doubt we can support each other, but our manual of life is personal, because, that’s just what our bodies are.
Listening to our bodies, it sounds simple, it’s not. Our bodies give us a million subtle messages every day, messages that most never even bother noticing. I know without a doubt that I paid no attention to most, which is how I can say that. For example, I don’t think I ever noticed my feet, unless they were in pain, otherwise, who knows what they felt. Now, I hear everything that they have to say, every second of the day. Everyone knows the saying “when we are in pain it’s our bodies telling us there is something wrong”, well, drop that one on its head, pain for us, normally means nothing. Plus on top of that, the word “pain” by no stretch of the imagination can possibly cover the spectrum from types or the strengths that it appears in. From pin prick to excruciation, it will test you in every way possible. As our sensations become more erratic and mixed up, unless we learn from every single one, life will become impossible. For me, as I said in the first paragraph, my body has replaced the normal signals I once relied on, with pain in odd places. Not learning could have meant, that I landed up in a terrible mess in more than one way. Which means, pain can be helpful as well as annoying.
Our bodies send out sensation and messages all the time. I for one, know that my entire body is alive all of the time. There isn’t a single part of me, internal or external that I am no longer unaware of all of the time. No, that isn’t an exaggeration, that is a fact. I know that is something that I couldn’t have said 10 years ago, but that isn’t all down to my listening, most of it, is down to my health. Every nerve I have now tingles, sparks, and shudders continually, my body is alive in ways I never thought possible, so I have much to listen to. Yet I still believe that listening to all of it is essential. Just because we already have one or even a multitude of condition, doesn’t mean that we can’t and don’t acquire more. Unless you already know the range of pains and sensation each area has proved itself capable of producing, how do you know when something new has arrived? How do you know if it’s time to call the doctor, or if it’s just a step up in what’s already there? No one want’s to find themselves looking stupid, nor do we want to live with they might just be able to cure. Listening could just save your life, or save your blushes.
I have read a million times just how complex and amazing our bodies are. It has taken me 30 years of illness, to fully understand just how true that is, and 10 years of listening, to believe it.
Please read my blog from 2 years ago today – 08/04/2014 – Just a step
I am sure that right now in the head offices of Twitter there are some very smug programmers walking around patting themselves on the back, personally, I change that to a rather large knife in their back. Once again they have changed things without great thought! Try clicking on a tiny little number when your hand shakes and jumps all the time, hitting the background takes you away from the page and you have to reload and scroll forever to get back to where you were!! Arghhhh I have taken a whole hour longer just because of thier bright idea to get to this point today, but it’s done, all I can hope for is that just like has happened in the past, they…….