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What chronic pain aspect makes up the half-empty lifestyle ?

JohnJJohn Posts: 964
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:40 AM in Chronic Pain
In my newbie days I had little knowledge of chronic pain and left on my own in isolation developed less than favourable habits and behaviours to deal with the pain and those around me. It is possible to exist in this negative outlook and it is not advisable for creating opportunity to move forward and improve.

It was something I had learned to do, before I learned better ways, in attempting to cope and manage it more effectively those who we deem effective have a grasp of what works for them and some semblance of acceptance with a small a. I know that the pain is no less, for behaving in a manner that perceives to the outside world, I can cope with this pervasive and debilitating condition.

I am the best actor in a supporting role, how do you manage your half empty traits.




  • I have nothing but respect for you as I've always read your post, actually more than once, maybe 3x (LOL!) -- Not enough coffee this early morning but I'm not quite sure whats your question here and I would respond to you if I understood.

    Take care,

  • I must be dumber than dirt today. I am not understanding the post.
  • "Not enough coffee here either, but I look forward to understanding it soon." she said crossing her fingers.

  • I THINK John is asking how we cope with our chronic pain and the fact that we are not able to do as we use to. Please correct me John if I am mistaken.
    Because I am unsure of the question I am unsure how to answer too. I too am dumber than a box of rocks today and I am on my third cup of coffee.
    No John I am NOT making fun of you but of myself. Forgive me but I AM on drugs you know.
    Cheers :H
    Patsy W
  • Hi John,

    I had Mike read this and his input was very helpful.

    This is what he shared...

    For us to turn the half-empty glass into the desirable "my glass is half-full", we (the chronic pain sufferers) need to be more expressive when we are hurting. There is no need for us to "put on the happy face" when we are in need of support. As much as we thrive on helping others, our loved ones thrive on helping us through our rough times.

    My nature, is to not ask for help. It's a negative trait and I'm working really hard on turning it around. Although I refuse to whine or complain... I am learning to be more descriptive and specific when I am having a rough time. The results of this are positive for both the giver and myself. If I am having a spasm in a certain area in my back, when Mike rubs my feet... it helps to ease the pain and feels so good. It makes Mike feel good to hear me say, "You have no idea how good this feels". When I get really knotted up in the neck to shoulder area, he will gently massage those areas. Once again, the results of this are positive for both of us.

    We need to include our family and friends in supporting us to get our glasses half-full again. It's in our best interest and also their's. Your friends here at Spine-Health also want to help you, John. Think of how delighted you feel, when someone tells you, "Thank you John. You really helped me with what you shared". We have that same desire to help you, in any way we can.

    Are you still experiencing the inability to stand? Is there anything that is weighing you down emotionally, to where we could help give our advice as a true-blue friend of yours?

    You will always be a rock for supporting others, John. We would love to be a rock for you, as well.

    Blessings to you, my friend...

  • It's always good to hear from you. I'm trying to get out for a walk today and I have to get my hair cut. I've neglected some things in my life due to this chronic pain. Most likely a disappointment to myself and what I show to the world. I'm trying to get better everyday. I struggle to walk with my cane and sometimes embarrassed when people look at me and wonder what's up. I need to push myself to do things and think of myself more and not what others think of me whatever they think I am. I hope you're feeling better and hope you're able to get around a little better. I'm taking it one day at a time. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Like you John....I am a great actress when around others and things are really bad. I live alone so no one sees the tears when going through a rough patch like I have just gone through.
    Today I am able to get dressed for the first time in 2 weeks so this is a reason to celebrate. I shall walk my little dog and visit my neighbors and the smile you will see on my face will be a real smile. My pain has dropped back to what I call "normal".
    What I am now able to do I try to make them special. I LOVE thriller movies so my movie nights are special. I shower and put on my best nightie and make special snacks. I can't drink because of my pain meds so I put my Pepsi in a chilled wine glass. I also invite a neighbor to join me in watching my movie.
    When I am able to prepare a meal I also make it special by using my best china and silver and in the summer I put fresh flowers on my trey.
    This is how I cope with my life as it now is. I celebrate the things I can still do.
    And John...I still have hope that things will improve. Right now I am planning a vegetable garden this summer and deciding what flowers I shall put in my flower beds.I have not been able to plant a garden in several years but I have high hopes for this summer.
    BTW John....I know I do not comment much now but I always enjoy reading your posts. You are always helpfull and kind.
    Now I shall take my little Pepper for a walk and we both are going to enjoy it because tomorrow I may be struck down again with one of those awful pain spikes that lays me out flat. I pull through them because I know things will improve.
    Sorry for the loooong comment and I do not blame anyone for skipping over it.
    Cheers John and hang on to that hope!! "IF" I am able to plant that garden this summer I shall invite everyone on SH to a BBQ and fresh corn on the cob!!
    Here is to better days for us all.
    Patsy W >:D<
  • I'm not sure, my glass is not half empty. Sure like everyone else I have good and bad days. What I like about this forum is that I can come here and talk with other people who share the same frustrations I do. I think there are those who read post about a bad day or month and assume we are whiners or whatever. I've not been here long enough to know who everyone is, but I have noticed that most people have a huge amount of respect for you, my answer is in no way to be intrepretted as disrespectful.
  • My half-empty traits try to sneak back in for the attack. Last Spring I finally met up with acceptance, little a, and we have done quite well since lol.

    Have a great day!

  • Hello,
    Tammy I liked that share thing, and I am not here to confuse anyone, half full or empty may be seen as positive and negative, our objective it too encourage us all to be improvingly positive, not sentimentality. I post on other sites where the group have honed the symptoms that they have into a lifestyle of everything, even before I read the text written I knew where it was going and every event has become a drama and just include limited individuals and excludes others as a consequence.

    For the most part I do not do negativity and that is fortunate for me or not, in seeking attention some use and repeat all the things that have gone wrong as if those same aspects have not been experienced by us all, even though I do not wish to be seen as needy. That in itself could be seen as an empty trait in not allowing those best placed to help me in, I have been well supported and perhaps too selective in deciding who may help.

    It may well be more realistic to use emotive words to highlight our plight, that like me not using that strategy at all, in expressing everything as positive I behave positive. That in itself creates problems as it diminishes the reality of just how difficult all this pain is to live with, my external behaviour does not always match how physically difficult doing the simplest thing is as I then need to communicate the reality. I walked with two canes then one, now none, I do not get asked the same questions, as the perception in others is, that I have improved when in reality I just hide the truth more effectively. For the most part I will not allow myself to be the victim, in thought word or deed that may illicit more support form others.

    I have said before, that everyone has the right to complain and whinge but for me to keep doing that is more damaging than beneficial. Pain is pain and it is interesting that I am more content to help others than feel that need for equal support, perhaps we should work on our positives and negatives equally. Nobody has the power to reduce our pain as we would like and we have to take comfort for those kind words and comment from others experiencing continual pain.

    My acting now masks the reality and I have become too proficient for my own good, my skill in asking for help has improved. As time progresses we see how we behaved previously and where we focussed our attention, and learning can be an everyday event.

    Writing posts is about it pertaining to everyone whatever stage and duration they are at and attempting to cater to every individual situation is difficult, it is always aimed at the middle ground.

    Reaching and keeping in the positive is difficult if not impossible, we all work on our negative aspect to seek improvement, the sooner we reach a balance the better, for our well being.

    Take care I need a coffee myself now.

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    I do also enjoy reading your posts. For me, its like stepping outside for a minute or two and reading something from a great noble book.

    Actors and Actresses... How much each of has displayed that depends so much on if as chronic pain sufferers we want others to be aware or others to not even know.

    John, you have many experiences that you have had to deal and you always find ways to get by. Besides your own personal situation, I know that you also spend a lot energy with your son.

    Half Full, Half Empty....

    You know, looking at the full side always seems to shine a brighter light
    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
  • Ahh, it's easy for me because the cup is so big! Even half full is pretty darned good, I think :)

    No, I don't tend to act around people- but honestly, I've always been a bit stoic so my "real" demeanor isn't really one to tell everyone when things are hurting.

    But, seriously, I have a very strong support system. Not perfect (nothing is!) but enough so that what I have lost in ability I make up for in wonder at how amazing people can be when given the opportunity :)
  • Ron,
    I have read the noble book and held it as one might hug a friend, it contained truisms and poignancy and an insight to coping more effectively.

    To be fair, these noble words are reflection on academic pain strategy and only some of my words, those too have to be sifted for appropriateness and reading the theory of our perceived development tells us how it is, it is hard to accept at times and see oneself written as a chronic pain patient. Hope has to provide those expected improvements otherwise that are just words. My hope is tainted by time and experience and was a stronger version in its infancy as a newbie, more real and attainable, how will yours be in 20 years. It is not defeatist that I have to live with this condition all those possible improvements have been used and found wanting.

    Realistic goals should always be chased and hunted down as we use all our skill to make it happen. For me this needs to be more than just saying or hearing the right things, those who support this site are repeating the same improving message and cater to the ever changing new people arriving here. We are here to challenge misnomers about the perception of who we are as a sector, compared to our achievements those perceived negative traits in what people think we are, are wrong anyway, we are mastering our own belief and standing tall.

    The tool of last resort in the English model has been to use CBT once all those invasive procedure of epidural, shots or PT had been exhausted. For some of my peer group those negative traits had been allowed to develop into restrictive practice and far more of a problem than they needed to be, CBT attempted to deconstruct those to a more usable position.

    Arriving here can be daunting we have all those important questions that need some answers and we need to read a lot of information before finding those situations that pertain to our individual circumstance, knowing what may be relevant and when is always difficult. I am not suggesting that we focus on all those things that we could do better; we already do many things very well indeed.

    It is hard to remember what having no pain feels like, living a positive outlook even in the bad times is a thinking skill the more we use it the easier it becomes, if we believe we can do something this is the first stage of making it happen. I do feel a duty of care to help anyone cope, our understanding of how chronic pain develops is now more visible then when I started and how useful this knowledge and support would have been for me then.

    For some the notion of best practice is here, we have vast experience and methods of coping, I need more than just reflection, my future is ahead of me as I work collectively of both aspects of my own glass.

    Take care and be kind to yourself.


  • There are MANY days in which I see the "half-empty" glass you ask about, yet there are others in which the glass is half-full...honestly, it just depends upon the day and what's been going on both physically and emotionally.

    It's been so long that I've dealt with chronic pain, that I've come to learn to just go with the flow and accept that some days are good and some will be bad...just the nature of the beast we're dealing with here.

    As for me personally, I have to work on not making a good day into a bad one by worrying excessively, or by otherwise attempting to take control of matters that I have NO control over...that's always been an issue with me and now it's only gotten worse! I'll get there one day and I've got plenty of time on my hands to work on it. :)

    Take care and thanks for the thought provoking post.

  • I meant to leave this here earlier so I will now, and if any of you folks enjoy Country or Country/Pop music...here's a link to my webpage where you can hear a dozen or so of the songs I've written (the lyrics for all of them and the music for some) and had demo'd and/or recorded in Nashville. Getting back into it full time is why I so badly want to get well enough travel, spend hours at the PC writing, playing-out, etc!



  • I'm still mad as Edited about all the things I can't do because I pay so hard for it. I'm mad that I can only go out and pet my horse and love on him, can't ride him anymore. I don't think he's all that happy about it either. I'm mad that I can't garden like I want too, I'm mad that I can't sleep at night because I wake up dreading coming to this stinking job everyday because we need the money and there is no way I can retire. Maybe if I could take a medical I could do more of what I enjoy, but that is not a possibility. I am always kind and loving to my family and don't show them what I have become. That wouldn't be fair to them. I feel like my life is a Edited that is going nowhere. I guess I'm in the "glass is empty" and ready to break it against the wall category. I cannot seem to get out of this black place no matter how hard I try.

    Post Edited by Authority Member haglandc for inappropriate language.
  • Now that is definately one thing I can still do and absolutely love it! Play my guitar(s), sing and write music. I do enjoy when we travel, I break out the guitar and play and sing and generally have a crowd around shortly thereafter. I play a bit of everything, and a lot of Bon Jovi. Love there ballads (the older stuff). I have wrote a lot too, it is fun. Don't have a lot of time for it because work wears me out but I try to do some playing on the weekend.
  • of us on here .i have been in pain for more years than i care to remember .i was a happy go lucky kind of chap ..but divorce/loss of a good job /tragic loss of loved ones /and the chronic back pain .its very hard to see the good in anything other than pain medication and a comfy recliner !.
  • I had to look twice, except for the horse thing I could of wrote that post today!

    I tend to think my glass is not half empy, but rather it is cracked and as fast as I try to fill it up it drains away.
    After a period of time the futility of it all just gets on ones nerves don't it?

    My only thought is to switch from water to whiskey, hold the glass over my open mouth and see if someone will pour!
  • I been doing a little of that lately too.. Being somewhat numbs appears to be better than always mad.
  • That is awesome and perhaps we can collaborate and write something...two chronic pain guys can surely come up with something, since it's not like we wouldn't have plenty experiences from which to extract ideas from!
  • I'm a music gal and I probably sing better than you do.. LOL! Just teasing on that.. I love to sing 4 sure! I couldn't get the link to your songs to work tho? Can you post one that works maybe?
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