Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Be it in or out of the moment...

One more article popped onto my radar. Now, this one, I could have written as well.  It is about how distraction can help with pain.  This I understand.  Deeply.

Again, though, I think it takes a kind and merciful soul to sit with you when you are in pain, to talk with you or text with you, to help you step outside the moment and let it pass, as Inara advised on Firefly.

I have many blog entries on pain.  The nerve pain I have experienced has been so hard to endure.  The worst, when the moment has passed, seems to be when it feels like fire is racing up and down my legs just beneath the skin.  Of course, the frightening agony of a spine so stiff from arthritis that I can hardly breathe is a close second for worst pain.  But joining the world of migraine victims--for surely they are an assault--I would say that the combination of imploding and exploding and throbbing and searing pain in your head is most assuredly the worst.  Only when I am writhing on the bathroom floor, skin bare from chest to hips because my abdomen hurts so badly even the weight, the touch, of the thinnest shirt is agonizing I think that this must be the worst pain I must endure.

I have always had a high threshold of pain.  I think that is how I endured the terrible pain I have had over the past few years because of the problems I had bleeding so much and then constantly.  However, the surgeon mentioned something to me at my last visit when we planned to meet again to start exploring reconstructive surgery.  I am to make another pros and cons chart, along with my questions.  If I end up on medicare, the surgery would be covered then.  So, if I choose, if we choose to wait, it doesn't mean I am losing the opportunity for this help. But the surgery is a serious, serious decision before me.  One I should admit that I worry I shall not be able to navigate...were I to be honest about the matter.

The biopsy was so very overwhelming to me.  I honestly would never agree to such again without first being sedated...completely.  The first sample was an explosion of pain I thought impossible to endure.  There were two more samples taken.  I felt like leaping off the table at the first.  That she had started was the only thing that kept me on the table.  I thought that that is how it is for all women.  The surgeon mentioned her main concern for me to find a place on my pros/cons chart:  my pain receptors are highly...something.  I do not remember the word specifically, but something like over-reactive or over-charged or misfiring.  In short, they are the rest of me.

This past summer, I was talking with my internist who was trying to find a solution for my innards, not yet understanding it was neurological rather than system-based.  I was telling her that I never had a problem before with a medication she had targeted as a possible culprit.  She very bluntly said that my life is no longer what it was.  Before no longer matters.

That really was the very hard lesson I just swallowed about eating.  Foods that have been no problem before no longer are safe.  I have to remember this truth and stop trying to live in before.  I am no longer who I was physically, cognitively, mentally, emotionally.

Perhaps migraines are so devastating to me because of wonky pain receptors.  Perhaps the migraines others experience are far, far, far worse than mine.  Perhaps those with dysautonomia would be thankful for my moments on the bathroom floor.  Perhaps.

In any case, distractions are helpful to me.  Now, I know "experts" agree with me!  How reassuring.

For those who have served as a distraction for me, even if doing so is uncomfortable or hard for you, I am thankful.  Truly.  If you know someone who struggles with great pain, consider being a distraction for them.  In my personal experience, both active and passive distraction helps.  In my personal experience, simply not being alone with the pain is a kind of distraction.  In my personal experience, having someone simply be with me in the moment I am struggling to step out of is a kindness, an act of mercy beyond description.  You do not really have to do anything.  Talking or playing a game through my moans and groans is certainly a kindness, but merely being with me in some fashion...even a marvel, a wonder, a gift.

I am Yours, Lord.  Save me!

1 comment:

ftwayne96 said...

Any time you want to be distracted by a corny joke, just let me know. . .