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At the end?

dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,435
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:56 AM in Depression and Coping
I guess I have read so many posts recently where people talk about how they have had it, cant deal with it anymore, thinking about doing it in, etc

To me, those are the folks that always look at a glass as being half empty, or that they can not overcome this or that, or just plainly look at the negative aspects.

Living with chronic pain can really take its toll. But so many times I have read from new members that they have been dealing with these problems only for a few months and perhaps a year and can not handle it anymore.

Just read through many posts and you will see so many members who have been going through all of this for so many years, 10,15,20,25 or even greater years.

Those are the folks that never give up, they never allow their medical situations to consume their lives.

Yes, it is not easy, especially when you are so new to chronic pain. But what are your options?

1 - Give in, let the pain and discomfort run your life.


2 - Figure out whys to deal with it and still maintain a rewarding life.

It seems so simple. Those that want to, will do and those that dont want to, wont do.

On this site, please remember so many of us are on the same page and we understand.

There isnt one simple method that I could describe that would make things so much easier for ourselves. I can't, I wish I could, but this is something up to every single member here

Live life to its fullest. When you are faced with serious problems, find ways to overcome that. Once we allow ourselves to let our physical pain to rule our lives, that is basically the time when we say, just throw in the towel.

Instead, keep that towel and remind yourself every day as to what it takes to get through the day...
Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 


  • When I first started into this journey, if I had been told or read that I would have chronic pain for weeks, months, or years to come, I certainly wouldn't have been able to stomach that reality. Heck I wouldn't have even been able to understand it. After all, at that point as far as I was aware, doctors could and do fix most everything and medication could and does help with pain. I was totally oblivious to the concept let alone the reality of chronic pain. Reading or listening to others telling me that I would have to learn to live with it or live with a constant reminder of it, I would have tuned them out like a child does an adult saying "when I was your age we didn't have ......"

    Like so many other lessons in life, I had to learn it through personal experience. Like telling a curious kid not to stick their hand over a lit candle flame ... they're going to do it, and sometimes even more than once.

    Pain changes my focus on everything. It has done so in many unpredictable ways. Were I to have stumbled upon a group of veteran chronic pain sufferers years ago, I would have felt as if they were trying to lecture or be better than me by trying to compare years of dealing with chronic pain versus my months or days of struggling with it.

    What helped me was acknowledgement that what I was feeling was real. By learning the hard way that doctors and medications can only do so much. Discovering that no matter how many others had come before me, no one could bear the burden of my pain for me.

    There were many times when I felt I was at the end and that I couldn't possibly handle any more. Some how I was able to make it through that, but not by focusing on the thought that so many others have had and do have it worse than I do. My pain is just that... my pain. I have been fortunate enough to have doctors who saw it and refused to give up trying to help me. Doctors who told me they would never quit trying to help as long as I never gave up myself.

    I don't really know how to finish up this post other than to say that we all have to find our way through this craziness. How we visualize all that is happening is unique to each of us. Obviously for you it is "throwing in the towel", for me it is something totally different.

    I'm curious to see what others have experienced and what they visualize as the road ahead for them and chronic pain.

  • The only real thing I know about chronic pain, is I slowed down a bit and do smell the roses. The other thing I know is to never give up, I just don't see any other options. But like so many here I went through all of the why me, why can't they just fix it and this be behind me. I have had so many other sports related injuries and a surgery and some physical therapy and things worked out, sometimes not perfect, but better than chronic pain. While I learned the hard way this was not to be, I still to this day, believe maybe one day it will be that way. Oh there is one thing i also do know, I don't have all the answers, either. I don't want anyone else's pain, I will take what I got, as we are becoming better acquainted with each other now. I know what to expect day to day, what helps and what doesn't help. Those factors for each of us is different, and it is only by trial and error we have become better acquainted. But we are not friends!

    I also am blessed to have a doctor who continually works to help ease it for me, and trying different things as the scope of the injury broadens. Unfortunately, I feel for those whom haven't found that yet, and are out in the cold, been there done that, and it is the worst feeling. But keep searching someone some place will help you, that I can guarantee. Sometimes we don't always like the answers, like this is with you for life and it is what it is. Try to move past that and keep working to a better place. Relationship with doctors do take sometime to build, for them to know you and you to know them. Not every doctor is right for every person. For everyone here that is lost and still looking for the way, I was you once, heck I am still there somedays, too.
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  • In comparsion, I've only started down this road that we call chronic pain. I knew that when I first started experiencing it in 2008. I knew that when I first joined this forum earlier this year. Too many others here have far more pain, more issues with doctors, more difficulties in getting any relief.

    While many struggle with pain levels of 8+ my pain has generally hovered around 4-6. Sure I had the occasional flare-up to level 7 or 8, but then the flare subsided back to where it started. The only really major pain issue was immediately after my L5-S1 fusion. My pain peaked at 10 and stayed there for several days.

    Like everyone else here the constant, relentless pain wears on me quite a bit. I've shed a couple of tears of frustration and I've felt down, too. I am making a determined effort to avoid hosting a pity party. So far, I've managed to succeed in doing this. I've relied heavily on my faith and my family to sustain my spirits.

    I don't have any magic bullets. I don't have any answers to my issues. All I can do is to keep on keeping on. The lack of viable alternatives helps me to focus on this.

    Disability retirement
  • I too have chronic pain that comes from my spine problems, and am, comparatively speaking, new to it since it began in 2008, like quicksilver.

    But it seems much longer than that, like it has leaked into previous years. Maybe because it's such a struggle and it came on so suddenly. I hardly remember who I was before May 2008.

    What seems to have helped me in my personal situation is getting a job that gets me out of the house, being with people and having something that I'm counted on to do (and making money finally). It helps that nobody else in my entire company can do what I do in my job, so I know I'm needed.

    I also think about others who have chronic pain that's not necessarily spine-related, such as my husband who's 55 and feeling those "age related" issues, such as sore knees, wrists, ankles - all from years of much activity such as skiing, golfing and drumming. He suffers almost daily but thinks that he can't complain because "Look at you and what you've been through..." - nothing could be farther from the truth. His pains are as real as anybody's and deserves attention too.

    I listen to him when he needs to complain, ask him every day or two how such-and-such is, etc. It helps to keep me away from my pain and even wonder how much of mine is age-related also, not just from spine issues.

    As we get older, we're bound to have those nagging pains in our joints and we happen to have one humongous joint that runs down the whole of our body, from head to butt.

    I'd be lying if I said I wasn't almost as bothered by the other pains of age as I am with my spine pain. That pain can make me chair-ridden where the others generally don't, but they're there and they bug me.

    So, I guess I'm saying that we all have to deal with pain in one form or another, ours happens to be mostly spine-related, but you have to live with it, deal with it and accept it no matter where it comes from. We do what we can for relief, accept it and keep moving forward.

    We can still enjoy and even celebrate our successes that come along the way, whether it be a new grandbaby, getting that job you wanted, finding the right doctor, knowing you have had a successful surgery, finally having someone understand or finding Spine-Health. There's joy to be had and we can't let chronic pain ruin everything.

    Maybe it steals a day or days away from us, but it doesn't have to win in the end. There's still a lot of life outside of this, even if we live vicariously sometimes.

  • Now after your fusion and time has gone by are you any beter now? Few days after surgery pain spike would be normal in most cases. As long as nerves calm down and surgery worked hopefully things are back to normal for you.

    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
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  • I really hate the term "chronic pain". It's such a catch-all phrase that really doesn't explain who you are and what you are dealing with. Instead it gives many people an excuse to give up. Well it's chronic right?? so of course it won't get better.
  • alexhurting said:
    Now after your fusion and time has gone by are you any beter now? Few days after surgery pain spike would be normal in most cases. As long as nerves calm down and surgery worked hopefully things are back to normal for you.

    For the most part my pain levels are running around where they were before surgery. The one major difference is that I do not have any issues with the spine itself. Since my fusion I don't feel any pain at the point where the vertebrae used to slip. Sometimes that pain would cripple me, usually in the midst of doing something else.

    I'm thinking that most of my pain is caused by the inflammation that occurs as the fusion process occurs. I also have some new issues with numbness, tingling, and stinging in my legs (mostly the left). These have started to subside and I'm hopeful that as my nerves heal these sensations will disappear.

    How are you doing these days?

    Disability retirement
  • Here is the way i see it"

    The aging pain most get in a normal situation will never compare to the chronic pain from some of our spine issues. Many people will grow old and the age process will of course take its toll in there joints and in many other ways. But they grow in to it and handle it much better because it was not a sudden on set of a chronic condition.

    I am speaking in general cases of course not in all cases. Any sudden injury to the spine that never gets resolved is going to become a persons worse nightmare. We have so many diferent levels of outcomes with surgery and what level of pain a person was left in , Its a very wide range of outcomes.

    Some return to work but still have to deal with the pain but at least working helps there emotional state of being. Some try to return to work and realise just cant do it no mater how hard they try.

    Some never even make it close enough to try to return to work when by the time you get dressed and get ready for work, You get in your car drive a few miles realising pain is so overwhelming you are ready to drive to er not to your job . This 1 i know for a fact cause i done it.

    I had pulled over with such nerve pain it actualy made me sick throwing up on the side of the road shaking untill regaining my composure to drive back home an lay down.

    And no mater how many times i told myself, suck it up boy, its not that bad! Well its bad enough to stop me dead in my tracks.

    The emotional part of wanting to go to work and cant is the worse. Its very hard to tell your brain to stop feeling guilty about not being able to work. Well i got tierd of feeling guilty.

    The guilt was simply not helping my pain issues and was just simply making it worse.
    I myself is still learning how to enjoy diferent things in life no mater how small it might be. And if i catch a good day you bet your ass i am going to do something and not going to worry myself about, I dont want to over do it".

    If i am going to hurt either way when i wake up in the morning, Let me at least feel good about hurting after i at least did something that was worth the slight addition to my pain so i can keep my sanity".

    Ps. Did i mention i am thinking about going sky diving? Git - ir - done
    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
  • alexhurting said:

    And no mater how many times i told myself, suck it up boy, its not that bad! Well its bad enough to stop me dead in my tracks.
    Nicely said Alex. What bothers me is when someone else is the one saying "suck it up boy/girl"

  • C. I have had a friend say that more or less ,joking around i think he was joking ,you are never realy sure. I get very offensive when a person says that, especialy when knowing them for 30 years or so and they seen that after my surgery all my activities are very limited. No more golfing. No more boating as we did for years together and even back then i was already strugling with my back pain.

    When he said that i was all over it. I said listen you cry like a litle girl any time you get a migrane head ache. Keep talking and even now in my condition i will still beat you down and snap your spine lol. That ended that conversation.

    When a person knows they are doing everything in there power to fight this and do everything they can to survive this injury by staying as active as the body allows them to and someone 2nd gueses them not knowing anything about it. Oh its on baby!

    Then its time for a good old fashion beat down. Even if i blow another disc doing it lol
    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
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