Me Before You

A friend posted about chronic pain on Facebook and I had to share my own experience …

There are different levels of chronic pain. Mine is a flare type of being in bed in the fetal position to living with low level aches that prevent me from being in one position too long – I’m sure I look weird with all the contortion stretching I do in public but it’s to relieve the constrictive binding feeling on pain – at least for a few minutes. It might seem to others like I have a motor tic or movement disorder – I don’t. I’m self-conscious when I think of it but heck, I’m out grocery shopping and that’s good. I’ve spent thousands of dollars over the past 3 or 4 years on natural treatments to heal my chronic pain – I did not want to remain on pain pills or neurontin or submit to surgery. Essential oils, the emotional freedom technique, personal work, stress management, craniosacral therapy, acupuncture, myofascial release, and crystal therapy are peeling away the layers and getting to the root cause – but insurance won’t cover this route – they will cover the other route. Happy to say that even though I’m diagnosed with the “suicide disease” – trigeminal neuralgia – I’m experiencing moments of being pain free – there’s light on the horizon!

There was one part of that friends query that struck a nerve after I heard about the new movie release “Me Before You” and it was this “What about pain so unrelenting that dying seems like the only way to end it?”

First, when I saw the trailer about the movie “Me Before You” I couldn’t wait to see it and then a friend loaned me the book and I learned the story is about euthanasia aka assisted suicide. I was pissed. I felt betrayed by the author. There were so many different and better endings for that book. I will NOT be going to see the movie.

Why was I so triggered? I didn’t know if or when my own searing and disabling pain would end and I discovered how slow time could move. But even at my worst, I never felt like ending my life.

I work with people with disabilities (quadriplegic cerebral palsy) and they are amazing people that really deal with a lot and have helped put life in perspective … they are all so individual in their likes and dislikes, interests and personality, they live the life they have … yes, they need help but when I was the one giving that help, even in a small way, I felt blessed. Now with my own parents aging, I’m in the role of helping my mom help my dad, so life isn’t so overwhelming for her and it’s a blessed time of making more and yet different memories.

The person in the “Me Before You” movie was deeply loved and had support, but he wanted more control even at the expense of putting others in pain. How many people have total control of their life? People live in poverty, people have addictions, people have anxiety, people have mental illness, people have cancer, people have amputations, people have brain injury, people have autism, people have chronic pain, and so on.

As for my own experience with pain, when it was a 10 out of 10 for days on end and my blood pressure was soaring and I wanted to pull out my teeth and I couldn’t eat, I always felt that I could apply my pain to helping other souls – like Jesus crucification was for other peoples salvation and St. Paul’s pain helped others (Col. 1:24) … faith brought me peace through the pain. I don’t love pain, I have done and am doing everything to get rid of the pain … I DO NOT want the pain back but when I had to go through that “door” of being helpless to the pain – I found peace in faith. Everyone has some type of pain in their life, I hope they can find peace and hope and faith too.

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