I’m Caf and I live in Melbourne, Australia. I started blogging a couple of years ago, after being diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) in my right ankle, which I developed after wearing high heels to the races in 2006. CRPS used to be called Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) and is still known by this name to many long suffering patients.
I have learnt a lot along the way and blogging is a wonderful medium for sharing knowledge and treatments that are actually helping me progressively heal as well as cope with the day to day struggles.
Chronic pain effects every part of a person’s life. It limits ability to work and study, to care for oneself and to socialise. There are psychological ramifications to being in constant pain that need to be recognised and dealt with alongside the physical symptoms. Depression and anxiety are nasty side dishes and contribute greatly to a pain sufferers’ overall quality of life. There is no shame in feeling these emotions and I often write about the sorts of tactics that I use to overcome them.
Since the pain started, my life has been thrown into unpredictable chaos. The pain spread from my right ankle to consume my entire body, a condition known as Central Neural Sensitisation (CNS). This means that my body is extremely sensitive to pain – a minor injury, even a scratch that a healthy person might not even notice can be unbearable. A change in temperature or humidity can be extremely painful, even loud noise or a light breeze can hurt me. This generalised hypersensitivity is also characteristic of the chronic pain disorder called fibromyalgia.
Chronic pain is currently a huge part of my daily existence, but it most definitely isn’t all of me.
I hope to share with you a sense that chronic pain need not bring depression, nor be a lifelong sentence. There are people who have found a pathway out of chronic pain and if they can do it, then there’s certainly no reason that I can’t. I have to constantly challenge my preconceptions, my limitations and my chattering cynicism, however I have no choice but to fight to overcome this condition.
I am optimistic about my chances of recovery. I am hugely motivated by the progress I’ve made in the past year, thanks to Feldenkrais, meditation and my commitment to self healing. I am working every day to rid myself of this physical curse and I believe that I will eventually succeed.
This blog is where you will find stories of my tough times, but also my accomplishments. I keep creative by sewing, drawing, painting and writing – all of which I like to blog about.
Blogging has proven to be greatly therapeutic for me. This blog has also introduced me to many wonderful people that care for me through the tough times and cheer when I am doing well. We learn from one another’s stories.
The amount of times that I have had my mood turned around after reading an inspiring blog or comment is countless. The friends that I have made through social media continue to enrich my life on a daily basis.
I love reading books, watching films, seeing live music and going to the theatre. I am enchanted by good stories, whatever their medium. Reviewing is a fun way to sit and reflect on a story that I have just watched or read, as well as a great way to re-live and share live performances.
I love a good discussion and find diverse personal preferences intriguing – if you feel like adding an opinion then it is more than welcome on any review or post.
A personal blog is a weird thing to maintain because as a person, my interests are constantly changing. Rellacafa is a place where you can get to know me, the sore me and the rest of me, both of which are always learning and evolving.
You can also find me at: