Like my favourite sport today really has been a day of two halves, it started brightly with a mention for guessing the year right on our local radio station and this was followed up with another positive session with my Pain Psychologist Dr B. I feel I have control over my emotions a lot more now and although this doesn’t mean there are no blips it means they are more controlled and more reasoned. I can now see what is important to me in life, what is important to how I contribute to my community and/or to others, the example I lead, along with how my famiends see me, my values in my life compass and my short and longer term goals. I feel like I have come such a long way in such a short amount time since speaking to Dr B. I feel happier in accepting who I am, whilst challenging myself enough to know that I am learning to live again and not giving in. I have been lucky meeting Dr B and if like me you have ever been in a position where you felt you didn’t need outside help I would urge you to reconsider. I have my values written for me to return to and reflect on anytime I need to and a list of how my famiends see me to pick me up when those trying days come along. The session was left with an open end date and this filled me with fear and anxiety. I told Dr B this and she said her instinct as a caring person is to book an appointment however as my health practitioner she had to overcome her own feelings and do what she felt was right for me. I am nervous about my official retirement date in January but with Dr B’s toolkit and her vote of confidence I feel ready to accept the challenges of 2016. I have her number and can as a safety net call and make further appointments as and when and if I feel the need to have them. The analogy she gave was brilliant like learning to drive – you do all these hours getting the skills you need and then you get to go it alone. I am now entering my alone stage armed with my tools and best of all the support of my famiends, NACP and a strong will to succeed.
My spirits lifted we got home and then my LG, Wife and I made some banana bread, which was lovely, although next time I think it will be a little less cinnamon in it.
So all in all a very positive morning, the second half of the day and the cause of painsomnia quickly resulted in a day to forget. Firstly the dreaded wrapping of Christmas Presents. There is nothing worse than all the leaning, bending, moving, twisting, cutting, and sticking of wrapping presents, all of which is compounded when you have chronic pain. Fortunately my wife does the bulk of the wrapping with me the sellotape cutter, however when it comes to her presents it really would be a step too far and spoiling any surprises if I got her to wrap her own. So as the pain increased present by present I told myself to pace and that I would do them a couple at a time. This was going great and I came to the last present of the first session a surprise item and thought I’ll just open it and check it is all ok, and when I did so it wasn’t the item I had ordered. Well at least I thought it wasn’t, but with my pain and concentration levels I thought I better check.Incensed I broke our no internet Wednesday pact and checked the website – they had indeed sent me the wrong item, and one that was half the price of what I paid. I checked paypal and sure enough the higher amount had debited and I was furious. Instead of resting I was now creating a Paypal dispute and firing off an email to the company in the hope that they would courier the correct item out to me tomorrow. This when you are in pain and tense just made my levels worse.
The banana bread was ready to eat so I calmed down whilst this was consumed and with some reflection and an apology to my wife we decided to make the most of the sun and visit a mobility centre nearby to try out the raise and recline beds I need so I can get off the sofa at night and back in the same room as my wife, we would follow this up with a stop off at a Park for our LG to burn off some steam. Well we arrived in Attleborough and set off on the wheelchair to get to the shop. I was tired and my wife was pushing, the first dropped kerb we got to and I was tipped forward as the front wheels came to a grinding halt. So many kerbs are not flat and I find this a frequent issue – I must remember to speak to the Wheelchair assessment people and my OT about this. I wonder if there is an issue with the chair being the wrong size shape etc.
Maybe some of the other readers of this blog could share their experiences and whether pitching forward is an issue for them, and if so how do I counteract it
As we continued forward no sooner had we got 10 metres further down the road than a puddle was actually a pothole and as my wife pushed us (my LG was cuddling me) the whole chair tipped, being 5ft 2″ my wife cannot see over my huge bulk and could not see it coming and I knew it wasn’t her fault but she caught the brunt of my instant anger as she was there and had been pushing. Instantly the pain shooting through the right side of my body as I slammed my foot on the ground to prevent a full on face plant was like someone sticking a rad hot poker in my heel and pushing it right into my brain. My left should clicked and crumpled as I grabbed our LG and has been excruciatingly painful ever since. I am currently typing with my right hand which is in fact my bad hand as I am a leftie! Well that was the trip ruined the pain spike meant I wasn’t going to be able to try the beds, well I didn’t want to would be a better description. The pain was indescribable and the embarrassment factor meant I just wanted to escape the town. By the time we got back to the car my LG was blaming herself for being sat on me and had joined me in the tears. I explained it wasn’t her fault it was an accident but now my pain was bad so I had to go home (the one day I had left without remembering to take extra meds fu@king typical) I was in pain and angry and that was that day over, my wife’s day off and I’d ruined it. Our LG fell asleep in the car so didn’t get to go to the park and having to look after me when we got home prompted another meltdown from her and me feeling like the worlds worsr dad. Eventually she calmed down but by this time I was in a medication based wonderland of sleep and selfishly didn’t care (well the meds made me it wasn’t I didn’t care more a case of the pain took over and I dozed for around an hour). I’d love to say the day improved as the pain did but that would be a lie as the pain still hasn’t subsided and I am in the painsomnia stage now).
The day continued to get worse as I checked my emails and alas their was no update from the company I had ordered my surprise pressent from and out loud instead of in my head I said well that’s that then you won’t be getting your ………………and named the surprise item. SO now not only will the item arrive late the surprise element has gone. Stupid meds, stupid brain and stupid me for opening my mouth.
The day did have a happy ending of sorts though, we went to the shops to get the last few fresh bits needed for tomorrow (yes it is officially Christmas Eve as I type) from the supermarket and if we ignore the pr!ck who was in a hurry and therefore felt it was ok to say “sorry excuse me” as he physically pushed my wheelchair out of his way to get through. Whilst in the shop I bumped into a friend A and His wife L and their daughter. He like me is an avid Star Wars fan and has been so impressed with the new film that he has already been to see it twice. Bodes well for when I finally get over my sulking cutting off my nose to spite my face an go and watch it.
Reflecting back I am angry at myself and my embarrassment and letting it ruin what should have been a fun day, I am also in incredible pain and worried how this will affect me over Christmas and how already it is looking like I won’t be able to get to see my mate from the pain support group and his wife and boy tomorrow so now I am letting more people down and that circle of self loathing is already starting. I wish I had an anger release button for times like this, to let it all out and move on but because I don’t the pain festers on causing the beast to lay in waiting simmering away the whole time this new pain remains. Bloody heads and the impact they have on your wellbeing!
I finish this by Saying Mary Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all, I hope Father Christmas brings you lots of spoons