Chronic Pain, How Fun


Love: A tiny hand holds a larger one.

Dear Friends,

I have been mired in the land of self-pity and just general misery.  There are things going on in my life and they are taking nearly all of my mental energy.  While some people find it easy to write about the gritty and very personal things, I don’t.  I have certain boundaries that protect what I want to keep private.  When faced with insurmountable hurt, I throw up the walls, turn inwards, and hold on to every second of pain.  I just sit with it until I can find a way forward…or just moving in any direction at all.  It is certainly better than better than being still.

Every day I wake up, intent on it being a new day with a new start, but it never turns out the way I hoped.  I can’t seem to find those rays of sunshine or that sparkle that typically comes.  In short, I am clinically depressed.  My pile of stressors have far outstripped my coping skills and I have opted for some medication to help get me back on track.  I am not ashamed that I am struggling or that I need medication.  This is just one of many tools that are available to me and an indispensable part of my current self care routine.

In order to take some of the stress off of coming up with a blog entry, I asked my oldest to write one.  I am not going to lie, but reading what my oldest wrote was a bit like being kicked in the gut.  I have been sitting on it for three weeks, at this point, but I did promise them I would share whatever they wrote.  Unedited.

From a personal stand point, living with a mom with like 500 different types of chronic pain is a bit annoying. Like those day when she hurts, and I feel like I must help take care of two kids who hate each other’s guts and want to murder each other half the time. Sometimes, I help by making dinner and they aren’t happy because it isn’t like mom would make it. For real, am I living with food critics? That’s beside the point. I just feel like I need to be the adult a lot and that my childhood was legit flushed down the drain. For someone my age, to have this much maturity and responsibility is a bit rare, but I feel like I’m the parent when my mom has a migraine or her whole body is on fire. How delightful!
I would love it if my mom was better, so that we can do all the things we used to do before she got sick. Wait… I just realized I have turned into a generic teen. I’m done with ranting now. Even though my mom feels like a blob of pain 24/7 I still love her, like when she gets donuts! Even when we just go out for coffee after one of my doctor appointments, it feels nice.
I don’t like to see my mom hurting. I know that she doesn’t like to ask me for help, but she kind of does not have any choice sometimes. She tries to make up for it in her own way. Coffee and donuts! I really like that.

I’m done now. You can stop reading and enjoy the rest of your day and your family. Drink some coffee or tea, maybe sleep, go on a date with yourself, or play video-games. Ya know, things that people do.


It is hard to be a parent, and it is definitely hard to be a parent with chronic pain.  I constantly worry that I am not enough, and I try to protect my kids from the worst of things, including the pressure to be a parent in their own right.  The first time I read this, it seemed like a reflection of all of my worst fears.  Over time, and some reflection, it isn’t as bad as I thought.  There are definitely some points of exaggeration, especially at the beginning.  I definitely don’t have 500 types of chronic pain…although it does feel like it at times.  In the end though, I see a child with compassion, who feels loved, and probably needs a little extra time to vent.






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