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National Day of Action For Chronic Pain

apf

American Pain Foundation
A unified voice of hope and power over pain.

First Annual National Day of Action
Saturday, Sept. 26th, 2009

Along with several well-known disorders, many rare and difficult-to-diagnose disorders share the symptom of chronic pain. September is invisible illness awareness, but it is also the month for pain awareness.

Check out the American Pain Foundation’s website to see what they have accomplished, their goals, and how you can help.

Pajama Therapy

Then there are days…

I woke one morning last week and just knew…a “bad” day. Some bad days are sub par doable, while others are a category 5 and evacuation isn’t an option. This was a sub par day, mildly out of sorts, achy, and tired.

Confirmation came with an episode of SPS-lock down spasm in the hallway, precariously holding a hot coffee cup with a frenzied circuit of thought racing in my head, “Do I ditch the java on the hallway carpet or try to salvage it along with staying upright?” Tactical maneuver…”Hello, General Patreous?”

Muscles quivering, I get to the computer, shaken, sore, but unscathed. Sitting, I assess my situation. Stiff Person is agitated today; I am emotionally tired; and physically, I am not up to the struggle. A lazy day in PJs is in order.

The day passes with peaceful un-eventfulness. Evening was a quiet celebration with a large bowl of buttered popcorn, Coke on ice, and watching a DVD.

Calm, relaxed, and content…catharsis of my day of pampered solitude.

“True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” ~William Penn~

Copyright © 2008

Sleeping Booty

Last night I lay in the darkness, longing for the sweet oblivion of sleep…a temporary reprieve from the reality of pain and discomfort…maybe the bonus of a romantic dream with a sexy hunk.

After two hours of chasing thoughts: yesterday’s regrets, today’s worries, tomorrow’s to-dos; I finally shuffled down the hall for a 2:30 am blood-check. I clock in at a conscious and lucid 45. Nibbling a miniature Hershey bar and sipping a 15-carb apple juice, the fluorescent kitchen glare revives my tired eyes for round two of insomnia with fatigue-enhanced pain. After three hours of restless sleep, I drag my tired butt out of bed.

Having more than one chronic condition, along with medication/treatment side effects, creates a tangled mess of symptoms. Trying to determine exactly what causes what symptom is more difficult than detangling a box of miniature Christmas lights wearing mittens and a blindfold. I live in a fog of fatigue.

In my last entry, I mentioned a day of (literally-$$$) double-billing physician appointments. I had a performance with a periodontist in the morning. After my mid-morning/lunchtime break, I had an afternoon appearance request by a pulmonologist following my sleep study audition.

Donning my “jammies” for my sleep study, the sleep tech hooked various electrodes to my head and legs. An oxygen monitor was clipped to my index finger, a glowing red ET prop…”Ouch.” In hi-tech fashion, I was spied on and cyber-analyzed during a fitful night of zzz’s. The pulmonolgist reviewed my results to discuss possible problems with me.

The diagnostic verdict: I sleep like crap, no singular reason outside of Stiff Person pain or nocturnal sugar plummets. With the promise of each new day, I drag my sleep-deprived derriere out of bed.

“Not being able to sleep is terrible. You have the misery of having partied all night… without the satisfaction.”
~Lynn Johnston~

Copyright © 2008