Thursday, November 24, 2016

You Think My Pain Is Fake?

Chronic pain comes hand in hand with many invisible illnesses including Fibromyalgia, CFS, and depression.  It is a paralyzing affliction to live each day with continuous pain, but we must do our best.  The hardest part of having chronic pain and an invisible illness is the lack of empathy and understanding from others.  Take a good read of the picture above and it will give you an indication of how a sufferer feels each and every day.

Imagine waking up one morning and your body simply does not respond to your will.  This has happened  to millions of people and most suffer each day in silence.  Would you tell a paralyzed person in a wheelchair to 'get over it' or ask them to stand up?  Of course you wouldn't!  People with invisible illnesses and chronic pain need the same sort of understanding.  If we could simply will our bodies to do what we wanted and when we want, we would.  It is not a case of not trying, it is that we just cannot do it.

Just because the symptoms are invisible to others, they are very real to person suffering.  I have personally been suffering more the past few weeks physically, but at least I can keep myself busy and my attitude positive through writing.  What does someone do if they don't have a passion for something non-physical in nature?  The struggle alone is much more of a detriment to the sufferer at times than the affliction itself.

Be more understanding of others around you because you don't really know what is going on inside.  Even when we do know some of what is going inside, often we don't have the time or interest to care.  We can all improve our empathy and understanding in this world, and understanding people with invisible illnesses is a great place to start working harder at it.

Understand what they have lost and have had to give up in their lives, and show more care in choosing your words.  The sufferer has something terribly wrong within them and cannot simply 'get over it'.   We are not lazy or unmotivated, we are sufferers and survivors at the same time.  For those who are struggling I will try to offer inspiration where I can.

I know you can't 'get over it' so I will suggest that you move forward.  Even if it is only an inch today, maybe it will be a foot or a yard by next week.  I share your suffering and understand how hard life can be every day.  All we can do is choose to live life for the little things.  Search for little things that make you happy or causes inspiration, and you will start to see good things in the world much more easily.

Live in the present moment as much as you can and be mindful of your actions.  Stop worrying that others think our invisible illnesses are fake.  The people who matter will find the empathy required to stay in your life, and you will find better relationships this way.  Look for those people who stay around during your lowest points because they are the ones that truly care.  Pay attention to positive things when you can, and ignore negativity where possible.

Maybe you can't do what you used to love doing, but you can find new things and new people to love with what you have right now.  Your pain may not go away, but we can learn to ignore it.

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