Here is my experience of living beyond chronic pain. I’m healing from a break – days 0 to 14. Healing progress comes with time, patience, proper feeding and watering our bodies, and literally putting one foot in front of the other. Here are a few notes from the last two weeks since I fell and broke my left arm…and I am left-handed.
Day 0: In the afternoon, I fell hard on some concrete when I tripped over a heaved piece of pavement…fortunately I was with a friend, who helped me up and drove me to the ER. The good news was that I hadn’t broken my elbow and that I didn’t need surgery. The not so good news was the number and location of the breaks up at the wrist. They set my arm in a sling, without medication, but with me doing slow focused breathing, along with benefitting from my prayers and those of a few friends. I went home in the early evening and slept until the next morning. The power of the breath and prayer – what potent healing tools these are, and they are always at the ready for us.
Day: 1-11: I spent time both in bed rest and desk work, with limited walking from room-to-room. I was surprised at how tired I was, but I honored it. My mood was grumpy and erratic and this demeanor was a new phenomenon to me, at least when it lasted for days at a time. Here’s the thing: I knew not to judge the moment and not to beat myself up for being cross and feeling down. I made sure to do the slow deep breathing and allow all that was coming up for me in the moment. What a powerful and profound practice this was for me. I lived through a color, a shade, a different harmonic – all part of what it means to be human. Somehow, I loved myself through all of it.
Day 12: I walked 400 steps, 0.17 miles in 4 minutes, 20 seconds and had to rest. Exhausted, I took a nap and then had a good dinner and slept well for the night.
Day 13: I tied my own shoes for the first time since the fall. It was so interesting to me what pure joy I got out of this heretofore simple task! Later, I climbed a flight of stairs…easily.
Day 14: walked 4,133 steps, 1.7 miles in 3 hours…tired but not exhausted.
It is easy for me as someone who moments before this accident was fit and full of energy, to turn and judge myself as not healing fast enough. To deny the extent of the trauma. To try and push through all of it and do my best to ignore the yearning messages of the body. After all, these are the hallmark old behaviors I had as a chronic pain patient. I am well over three and a half years into my recovery from decades of chronic pain. I was given a toolbelt of stress management tools when I was in Dr. Peter Przekop’s pain management program. The cool thing is that I seem to really have incorporated all those tools into a whole new lifestyle, living beyond chronic pain. We do recover. We just need to listen to and honor the body’s messages to us. The body wants to heal. Our job is to provide it with the care it needs and then get out of the way, allowing the body to work its miracle of healing. This is a recipe to unleash your healing power and live a thriving life – beyond chronic pain. We don’t have to suffer.
#UnleashYourHealingPower #LivingBeyondChronicPain #kippinitreal