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Feeling useless

sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:30 AM in Depression and Coping
I feel so useless. I've been a housewife and stay at home mom for years but I was always busy. My husband never had to do anything around the house...that was my job. Now, my grass needs cut, my house needs cleaned, and here I sit. I just hate when people ask, "what did you do today?" Oh nothing...just sat around here eating painpills because I had nothing better to do. Sorry for the pity party.


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,848
    Thats just what chronic pain does to us, it robs us from the person we used to be and the things we always did.
    Now whats more important is understanding that because of some spinal surgeries, we may never return to 100% of what we were before. But with hard work, dedication and attitude we can regain so much.
    We wont have to miss cutting the grass, but perhaps instead of doing it at one time, we break it down into manageable pieces. Same for housework, a couple of rooms at a time only.
    And when people ask you what you did today, you can answer

    I am working hard every single day to beat the beast we know as chronic pain. And while I am doing that, I find some time to mow part of the lawn or clean some of the house
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • If i didn't know better I would've thought I posted this under another alias. I too feel useless. I'm also dealing with a not very supportive husband who thinks I do nothing all day but watch soap operas cuz I'm lazy.

    Just vacuuming the living room is enough to set me into a flare up and then I can't do anything for 1-2 days. Then it's time to vacuum again and sweep and mop. Yesterday I was mopping the floor and I have a swiffer mop. I had slippers on that don't have very good traction and I slipped a little. That little slip jerked my back and I was in so much pain.

    I just sit on the couch and stare up at the cobb webbs and say I will get you later lol. Not to mention the meds make me drowsy and dizzy so I want to sleep alot. I may dose on and off through out the day. I try to do just a little bit at a time but it's not enough to keep up with the mess my 3 kids (the 3rd kid being my husband) make daily. I keep sending my son to clean his room and he doesn't everything but that. I want to go in there and take all his stuff on the floor and bag it up and throw it out cuz that's what I keep threatening but I physically cannot do it.

    When I dose off during the daytime, my husband yells at me and tells me I'm fat and lazy. It's not like I chose to be this way. Please feel free to PM me with any questions, comments or concerns or just to chat.
  • O:) Sending you a hug -- sounds like you need one today. I had a pity party for myself last week -- goes with the territory. Remember that you have value and worth in this world, even if you're just sitting around taking pain pills.

    I agree with DiLauro -- baby steps with your usual activities. I was over the moon last week because I finally made it to my hairdresser -- my roots were SO long! This after several cancellations -- by the way, my hairdresser is an angel -- she told me just to come by whenever I felt I was having a good day (tolerable pain) and she'd fit me in. She did, gave the other two ladies who had scheduled appts. some wine and they could have cared less that she was running late because of trying to fit me in (L0L).

    I was out of bath soap because I didn't have the energy to go to the store so I starting digging around under my bath counter -- it's amazing what you can find -- sure enough found a small bottle of shower soap from Bath and Body Works someone had given me (again I was elated).

    Also took my darling dog to the dog park this weekend, after five weeks of not being able to take her.

    Just wanted to say you're not alone -- I just try to tell my self on the bad days that it's not big deal -- you'll get to it eventually, and I do.

    Here's hoping your next few days will be a little better. :H
  • I know exactly how you feel. I was used to holding down the fort and making sure everything ran smoothly for my husband and kids. Now, this weekend for example, my husband cooked dinner, vacuumed, bathed the dog, cleaned the kitchen, did laundry, and went grocery shopping/errands....while I lay in bed feeling guilty as hell.

    When growing up, I was taught to never sit around doing nothing while someone is working around you. I always joined in and helped with chores. It feels like everyone is picking up my slack and I hurt too much to help out. I totally understand what you're saying. Am I an honorary guest at your pity party? O:) Please smile...I'm trying to cheer you up a bit.

    What really helps me through tough times and stops me from sinking too deep into depression is a sense of humor, Cymbalta, and Spine Health ;) See, you're grinning now. Just do what you can, when you can- your family will appreciate it. Little things do count and give you a sense of accomplishment. No one wants you to overdo it and make the pain worse. Take things one day at a time. If you can't do anything one day, it'll be there the next (that's what I tell myself) That laundry pile won't grow legs and run off, neither will the dishes.

    And it's okay to enlist others to give you a hand. We did not cause our back problems and we need help just like other people with other ailments do. It's okay. Yes, I mourn the loss of my physical abilities before my back went bad, but I'm still me and nothing will change that. I will however do whatever is reasonable to help my situation. I take my meds like prescribed, make my PM appt each month, follow their recommendations, have an occasional ESI, whatever...I am going in for a morphine pump trial and I hope this improves my quality of life.

    No matter what happens I can't give up on myself; it's not just about me- I have my family to think about and I'm grateful they support me all the way because it really makes a difference.

    Well, I'll leave you alone now ;) and I hope this gloomy days brightens up for you, and tomorrow is a brand new day to start over again. Take care <):)
  • Hello Sunny,

    I understand the feelings you are having today. I experience feeling useless on more days than I can count. When we go from being so active to a life with minimal activity, due to our pain, it is very difficult to adjust. We didn't ask for this to happen to us.

    There are so many things we want to do, but on days we have the high levels of pain and exhaustion... resting and eating is sometimes all we can accomplish.

    On days like this, I tend to do a lot of deep breathing exercises. I will lay down and concentrate on relaxing my neck first and finish with my feet. I do these deep breathing exercises with my eyes closed. I have found aromatic candles to be very comforting while I do this. My favorite scent is Sweet Pea. It is a delicate scent, for these delicate times. If you can slowly and gently open and close your hands, rotate your wrists, rotate your ankles, do whatever little stretches you are able to do comfortably... it makes you feel like you have accomplished some stretching and exercising for that day. Even opening your mouth wide and closing it slowly, relieves tension we get in our jaws due to stress.

    If family or friends ever ask what they can do to help you... I have requested soft pillows and the softest cuddle blankets they may run across. I will put the pillows under my feet, under my legs and to the sides of me to rest my arms. The soft blankets feel good on your feet and are soothing to just cuddle up with.

    I try to make these days of resting, as comfortable as possible for myself. It's inevitable that we will have them, so why not make them a little more inviting for ourselves?

    We work hard to get through our daily pain and I feel we should reward ourselves on our rough days. Whether it's through soft pillows, comfy blankets, candles, disposable heating wraps and DanActive drinkable yogurt treats for me... we deserve these comforting rewards.

    Best wishes for a much better day tomorrow.

    Keep rehearsing this very true sentence from the great Papa Ron:
    "I am working hard every single day to beat the beast we know as chronic pain."

  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
    All of your replies mean so much to me. I really got a few smiles and feel better just knowing someone understands. Each of you do understand exactly. It brings tears to my eyes to read all the replies and know that each of you are suffering too. I do have days that I think why me...selfish I know. I do try to do everything I can and a lot of times more than I should and then I have days like today. It's hard for me to accept or ask for help. I've always been the one in my family that everyone else turns to for help. Thank you all so much. You'll never know how much I appreciate you. I hope that all of you have more good days than bad...I guess that's the best we can hope for?
    Thanks again,
  • Aw, sweetie, I'm sorry you're feeling down. The beast does that to us, doesn't it? Too bad we weren't together yesterday, just like you replied to me in my pity party post.

    I'm so glad you found us and that we have you here. We can all understand exactly what you're going through. I suppose we have to try and find joy where and when we can, and just make it through in between.

    I'm sending you gentle hugs >:D< . Things will look up soon.
  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
    I know I have way too many pity parties at my house! Hopefully when the weather brightens up I will feel some better. It's been raining here for the past eight days! I live in VA. I'm glad that you're feeling better today also. I appreciate you and everyone here.
  • We have had rainy days on and off and they sure can make managing pain more difficult. I was feeling sorry for myself and guilty when my husband came home from work. He looked worn out from working all day, and there I was on the sofa and in the same position that he finds me every afternoon.

    Thank goodness, my husband never makes me feel guilty. I try to do my part the best as I can by watching TV (shows that he likes) and make conversation with him. He tells me that just being there (emotionally and mentally) is enough.
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