Chronic Pain: A Free-Form Poem

A life of chronic pain.

A life of chronic pain means constantly having to cancel plans or explain why I am not enthusiastic being around people.

Irritability.

With every step, I cringe, blinking back the tears that I am trying to hide.

Eight, Nine, Ten level pain.

I shut my mouth and lie when people ask my how I’m doing because nobody wants to be friends with a person that constantly complains, or so I’m told.

I’m fine. Thanks.

Spending one night out on the town causes being bed-ridden for two to three days with a swollen leg and blotchy skin.

Not enough energy to eat.

“You shouldn’t be using those spots.” “You’re not really disabled; you shouldn’t be abusing someone else’s handicap placard.” “You’re too young to really have anything wrong with you.”

Gritting my teeth at the stupidity.

 

A life of chronic pain means having to justify how many medications you are taking and reassuring people that you are not a drug addict.

Frustration.

I can never get comfortable enough to sleep, and yet I’m perpetually exhausted.

Aching, stinging, shooting up my leg.

I find myself wishing that I could switch bodies with somebody else for the day just to get a singular moment of relaxation.

Nobody deserves this pain.

Dealing with the constant weather changes causes my sympathetic nervous system frequent CRPS flare ups.

AKA my own personal hell.

“You should just do some yoga.” “Are you sure it’s not all in your head? You could be making it up.” “There’s this new thing that I heard about which could help you.”

Well intentioned, but I’ve tried just about everything.

 

A life of chronic pain means nearly dropping out of college because you had so many doctors appointments, but the professors were determined to get you through it.

Struggling.

It’s constantly putting aside my pride and accepting help from other people.

Wishing, hoping, wanting some semblance of normalcy.

I superimpose my pain on every single memory because I just can’t remember what it feels like to live without it.

Does knowing or not knowing hurt more?

Worrying about falling in public causes huge bouts of anxiety and depression that last for many days at a time.

Counseling and antidepressants.

“You will be better soon enough.” “I’m so excited for you to get this surgery that will improve your quality of life.” “I’m so proud of you for getting through this.”

I love my friends and family.

 

A life of chronic pain means seeing the best of humanity and the worst of humanity.

A life of chronic pain means realizing how damn strong you are.

A life of chronic pain means falling down and getting back up again.

A life of chronic pain.

 

 

 

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