At the Doctor’s office the other day, I was placidly answering routine questions regarding medications, changes in any routines or treatments, and of course, current complaints with the nurse practitioner before my appointment with my MD began.
“Where does the pain currently affect you the most?” The nurse questioned, her pen steady as she listened for my reply.
I laughed without humor before responding that the pain throughout the entire length of my body, including joint, muscle, and nerve pain, screamed daily in my ears at nearly equal levels. “It hurts to live,” I summed up without giving a thought to this simply put truth in my life.
- It’s a basic fact of my life – everything I do hurts. Walking, sitting, standing, eating, reading, writing, driving, shopping, traveling, treatments. Every activity hurts in one way or another.
For example, when walking my dog outdoors, the sunshine bothers my eyes and causes my chronic cluster headaches to worsen, while my muscles and joints ache as though my body significantly aged during the time it took to simply put on my tennis shoes. Random noises can set my nerves on edge within seconds and temperatures high and low can cause my oxygen levels to dip while my heart rate soars.
Life hurts. Do I stop living? Some days I “take a personal day” and take it slow, while other days I fight through the pain, knowing that my life will unfortunately be filled with daily pain and I cannot retreat because of such difficult daily battles.
After my answer at my Doc’s office, the nurse paused; later, she said it was hard to hear me say that life was pain and it hurt to live, adding with great tenderness that “it shouldn’t be that way.”
You know what? I agree wholeheartedly, and will continue to live through the pain with the hope of living without so much of it in the years to come.