This post is written from an MSK patient’s perspective and is not meant to diagnose or treat any condition. Do not start or stop any treatment without first contacting your healthcare provider.
I don’t know one person who doesn’t suffer from some sort of pain. Even people without chronic illness or disease tend to have aches and pains.
Due to MSK, I have chronic flank pain but I also carry a lot of pain in my pelvis. Which is why I was shocked when I saw the above info-graphic. I carry pain in my “survival center.” Anyone who knows my personal life can tell you it has been filled with surviving. I went from a successful, independent career woman to someone who lost their home, their marriage and almost my life on several occasions. I’ve lost everything and everyone I’ve ever held dear, had to move states and suffer from two rare, incurable illnesses.
Due to the circumstances I’ve had to be “taken care of.”
Ironically, my caregiver now has pain in the “burden center.” This person is in school full-time and works full time in an attempt to get a better life for us. He literally feels the weight on him, considering he is the only one working now and feels like our future is dependent on him.
Minus what modern medicine wants us to believe, we are triune creatures. Which means we are mind, body and spirit. Each one impacts the other. When you are carrying difficult emotions, it is going to affect your body. The same goes for battling health issues or pain, it is going to affect your spirit.
When we are in pain constantly and feel like there is no chance for relief, that can make us feel hopeless.
Our minds impact our bodies. Our bodies impact our minds. Both are impacted by our spirit.
What can we do about it?
It is impossible to be happy 100% of the time. Life has hard moments, especially with chronic illness.
How do you manage keeping your body, mind and spirit in balance?
There is no magic trick to happiness, but there are some basic things you can do to improve your life.
1- Give yourself BASIC HUMAN NEEDS!
Eat, hydrate and sleep properly. Your physical needs need to be met, every single day. Drink enough water, eat nutritious foods and get enough rest.
2- Surround yourself with POSITIVE INFLUENCES.
You may have to be around some negative people, but that doesn’t mean you have to let them control you life or make you feel bad about yourself. If at all possible, try to limit your time around negative people. Cling to the supporters in your life.
3- Do something you enjoy, every single day.
It can be something small like taking a hot bath or listening to your favorite music but doing something you enjoy can make life worth living. It becomes extremely difficult when the bad in your life outweighs the good. Doing something for yourself every single day will help you “detox” from the negativity. You have to fight through the bad moments to get to the beautiful ones.
4- Be your own friend.
Negative thoughts and self talk can lead to depression and suicidal thoughts. If you wouldn’t say it to your best friend, why would you say it to yourself?
Negative self talk about your health, limitations and shortcomings with inhibit your spirit and is harmful. Be kind to yourself.
5- Live as much as you can.
Sure, with a chronic illness it can be difficult and sometimes impossible to live the life we want to. But know that NO ONE lives a perfect life. What you see on facebook is not always the truth. Everyone has struggles, everyone has things they wish they could change!
The happiest people are the ones who accept the good and the bad in their lives and do the best they can with what they have.
Live YOUR life. Don’t try to measure up to anyone else.
Laugh with the people you love.
Be a light in a dark world.
Switch your focus to what you have not what you want.
Enjoy every joyous moment you experience….
Even simple things like:
A warm hug from a loved one
A nice family dinner
The sight of your kids falling asleep
The taste of your favorite foods
The sound of the wind blowing through the trees on a warm spring day
The feel of riding around in the car singing along to the radio
Life has little moments that remind us it’s worth living, don’t take those for granted.
What you are taking for granted, someone is out there begging God for.
The very breath in your lungs, someone is praying for.
So, let go! Be thankful. Live the best life possible. Be kind to yourself!
It can be difficult, It can feel impossible……
But, you have the choice to either be happy with your life or be miserable wishing for someone else’s.
The choice is yours.