Awaken the fighter within!
Being young and having chronic pain is a real letdown. You wait your entire life to “grow up”, just to feel much older than your years when that time finally comes.
The people who love you want to understand how you feel. Unfortunately, unless they have been there, it is hard for anyone to understand what it feels like to live with pain. Many of us have had to give up careers we love, hobbies we enjoyed, or even having children because of a chronic illness.
I have osteoarthritis in my neck and lumbar spine. I was 31 when I was diagnosed by my general practitioner. Due to the degenerative nature of my condition, I had to leave my job as a nursing assistant. I loved working with the elderly, but the pain in my body had become unbearable so I needed to switch careers.
I am happy with the changes that I have made and I am now a mother. The decision to have a child was easy for me, I’ve always wanted children. However, for people who have more serious ailments, some cannot have children at all. This is another good reason not to ask someone when they are having children.
I believe everyone has struggled in this life. I have a wonderful husband and a great support system but my struggle is the pain that I feel in my neck, back and now my hands. I have also been battling crippling fatigue. In spite of all of this, I have not given up on having a good life and neither should you.
Along with chronic illness can come a feeling of helplessness and if we are not careful, this can turn into apathy. There is nothing wrong with feeling sad, but if we let our pain consume us, we lose. We have our whole lives ahead of us, and we should live each day as it is the last!
I recommend using pain medications sparingly. They can be hard on the body and some narcotic painkillers can make you depressed or addicted. Take only what you need, and wait until being awake for a few hours before taking anything. This way you can measure your pain and you may realize you do not need to take anything! Use heating pads and topical lotions (Voltaren, tiger balm, etc) instead of pain medication.