There are many warriors in my life that battle with the dragon, fibromyalgia. I know dozens with debilitating migraines or more severe brain conditions. There are people who cry over a sore back; then there are those who are stoically fighting to stay upright and active. Personally, I am petrified of MS, which has its onset in our 30s and 40s.
There are too many ailments and syndromes to list, but they all have one side effect: Pain steals our loved one.
I must confess. Fifteen years ago I was selfish, insensitive and cruel to someone in chronic pain. I never tried to understand why one day was better than another. I expected, no demanded, my needs to be met and attention focused on me. I believe that behavior nearly drove a man to his grave.
I will admit, I am not overly nuturing to begin with. I’m that mom that doesn’t dole out bandages, I ask, “Would you like a cold papertowel?’ I will offer remedies, I will stay with you if you are sick, but I am hopeless at bedside manners.
I cannot say when my awareness to chronic pain began to change, but I am glad it is growing. I have written about time budgetting and the Spoon Theory analogy. I have learnrd to be more patient and what NOT to say…still learning. Some days I revert also. Hopefully the people in my life realize I do try.
If someone you care about is struggling, this is a helpful resource. Not all of these will be possible, but hopefully some quality of life and joy can be found in the midst of the struggle.