I joined the social network for A Chronic Voice earlier this year because I needed to find people who understand what life is like with chronic pain. Today I have written a post using the November link-up prompts, to show my experience of living with a chronic pain disorder. Click here to find other blog posts from fellow chronic pain sufferers, or #spoonies as we call ourselves online.
Initially I was going to describe my experience of paying for medication. It was only last month when I discovered that the NHS offer a payment plan of just £10 per month, and you can order as many prescriptions as you need to. I currently use three different types of eye drops, so that is going to come in very useful. But then I thought about the issue of paying attention to my condition. Today, for example, as I write this post, my eyes feel sore. Yesterday they felt fine. I have removed a few ingrowing eyelashes, and I did cry earlier which made them sore, but I never can tell from one day to the next how they are going to be. All I can do is pay attention to my symptoms and try to correlate based on what I do, where I go, and how much medication I use, to record the fluctuations and flare ups.
I do not have any hospital appointments to attend for the foreseeable future. My doctor requested a nine-month check-up after my visit in September, but she wryly suggested that it would be more like twelve months before I return, such is the delay in processing patients at the Manchester Royal Eye Hospital. Who knew so many people had so many problems with their eyes?
This is beginning to overwhelm me, and I’m not even thinking about Christmas yet! We receive a lot of letters from school regarding various charity events, PTA events, special outings or visits that require parental consent, and all sorts of random stuff. Last week I felt quite stressed trying to collect enough pound coins and fifty pence pieces to send in with each of my daughters, along with the correct forms. Then I had to remember school photographs this week, which meant the girls needed to look neat and tidy (which they do anyway, of course!). And now I’m organising several family birthdays that crop up close together. Phew!
I don’t feel much like plunging into anything right now to be honest. I feel depressed because I miss my dog, and I recently had a very traumatic encounter with an animal charity that I tried to re-home a puppy from. They decreed me unfit based on a brief telephone call. Now I am sitting at home alone, missing my therapy dog. Fortunately, I have access to my friend’s dogs, and I got to go for cuddles and a walk with my Labrador friend Echo last week, and my Cockapoo friend Mabel this week. My friends know how to look after me. And yes, I am still searching for a dog. I will happily plunge into a new relationship with a pet, but especially a canine one.
I have ignored my intuition recently, and it bit me on the backside. As my reiki journey continues, and I prepare to embark on 3rd Degree Shinpiden training, I will make time to reinforce my spiritual practice. I know when I need to slow down and rest. I know that it is ok to admit defeat and step back from societal demands. Daily life is stressful, even when we do regular, repetitive tasks. As we approach the Christmas season, I know that I will take time out when I need to.
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