Today is one of those days when the little messages you leave for me on this world wide web are helping to keep me on track. By that, I mean on the coping track. Connecting with people helps me to not let the pain get the better of my mind and to get through the harder days without losing my focus. I haven’t the foggiest idea how people survived living with CRPS before the internet.
Maintaining focus is not an easy task when one’s brain is abuzz with misguided pain signals. Pain brings along a lot of nasty thoughts that, if you let them have any validity, can make your situation a whole lot worse. It’s so easy to get caught up in your own head when you’re in so much pain. Becoming aware of negative thoughts and the reactions they cause is the first step to being able to control how you respond to them. “As the saying goes, “no consciousness, no choice; partial consciousness, partial choice; complete consciousness, complete choice.” In mindfulness psychotherapy this is called awakening to our reactivity.” I thoroughly recommend clicking that quote and reading the entire blog post, it is an excellent, concise description of ‘mindfulness’. Dude knows what he’s talking about, I might just have to buy his book!
Today I drove myself to a doctor’s appointment. It turns out that I drove a little too far. I thought the forty minute trip was within my capability when I left my home, however my body decided that today it was going to get particularly upset about the vibrations of the car. I managed to get home, with the help of a little left foot driving, but once there the flaring took off within minutes. It launched with the such force that it squeezed water from my eyes and squeals from my lips. It’s taken a while to adjust, but I can handle the higher pain level now, at least long enough to do a little interneting – which brings me back to the point that I opened with…
Just a ‘hello’ through Facebook/Twitter/Email/SMS can perk me up at anytime. When a flare kicks in, receiving messages from friends who understand helps me to fight off those nasty thoughts that are trying to reach out and pull me into depression. For a little while there, I lost my cool…but checking back in with reality, via real people, via my laptop, has helped me to get it back. Checking in with other people helps me to regain perspective and I get to thinking, ‘What would I tell me?”
I am in pain, but I don’t have to stress about that fact. Just because I didn’t handle the drive particularly well today, doesn’t mean that I won’t in future. Just because I am in rather a lot of pain right now, doesn’t mean that I will be forever. In the mean time, I can co-exist with the pain, I don’t have to hate it, or resent it, or despise it, it simply is a thing that is. I don’t like it, but thinking about the fact that I don’t like it isn’t going to help it go away, therefore I will put more effort into focusing my thoughts elsewhere and tuning out the brainwave channel that is only broadcasting negativity.
Love & Gratitude,