I look in the mirror and do not see "me" as I once did. Yes, I know aging is a factor, but for those of us who are fighting Chronic Pain on a 24-hour basis, the battle scars show up fast! Dark circles under the eyes that are filled to the brim with sadness that can't be spoken so easily to others. If I tell somebody my night was very rough and that I couldn't sleep, they look at me like I'm from outer space or something. The perception is that everybody should be able to sleep through the night and wake up feeling refreshed and ready to tackle another day. Pain is not forgiving. All it wants is to rob your body and thrash you to the ground, throw wave upon wave of wicked Pain at you and laugh as Pain sees a person brought to their knees, sobbing with such heartache from their personal fight with this thing called Chronic Pain.
So the next time you come in contact with somebody who is in the Chronic Pain Club, please give them a moment of your heart and give them a soft cushion of love to fall on. Just listen to them and step away from the helplessness you might feel in thinking there is nothing you can do to help. Showing another human genuine love and affection is the best medicine for those who are in the fight of their lives. We will gladly take the smallest pebble of compassion and hold it tight inside us because you then realize, "I am not alone in this." And by the grace of God, I can dig deeper and find another ounce of super-human courage to keep fighting back.
There are many days on the Pain road where we think joy will never be attainable to us again. But with love from others and simple prayers offered up to help us get through another day of rotten Pain, we then can smile. We can smile for a few moments, exhale and take a deep breath and then dive right back into the Ring of Pain.
I have a blogging friend who has recently hit that wall of stone that silently waits for us to slam into. I keep repeating this simple truth: "Remember, you were here before Pain showed up in your life" so keep hanging in there and take it one day at a time.
My prayers go out to all who must fight back at Chronic Pain, and keep looking up for joy. It's out there. Maybe not in big amounts but in this journey, the smallest amount of true joy can carry us a long distance in our fight.