Everything Hurts and I’m Dying

It’s three AM and I’m awake. Let me clarify, I’m still awake. I’ve got a headache and my eyes are tired but my pulse is elevated, I’m drowning in my own sweat and I can’t friggin sleep.

I know what’s wrong. It’s the steroid shot they put in butt at about 4 PM yesterday. Probably combined with the oral steroids I swallowed some hours after. The muscle relaxer and the codeine-enhanced cough medicine are no match. I’m wide awake.

What the heck is wrong with you?

Well, I’m glad you asked, friend. After feeling a general sort of malaise for two days, I woke up yesterday morning with a chest cold. Again. I hopped in the shower to ease some aches and congestion and then about five minutes after I got out, something went horribly wrong with my back. Suddenly I couldn’t bend over, or move in certain ways, or take a deep breath without severe stabbing pain and muscle spasm in my left shoulder. The spasm literally stopped me in my tracks and pulled me back from whatever activity I had tried.

My husband was in Kansas City for work (a four hour drive). My kid is 17 months old. My family is at least a two hour drive. My dogs were insulted or mad and acted like complete assholes.

It really was kind of the worst day I had had in a long time.

I haven’t really gotten an explanation for what is wrong. My ribs were out of place probably from coughing although my coughing had been minimal. My doctor honestly seemed a little perplexed as he watched me try to “take a deep breath” and as I jumped and gasped when he touched a small area near my shoulder blade. The nearest I can come up with is that I threw out my back which usually happens to a different area. It’s weird. It’s unexplained and it’s horribly painful.

Which has kind of been my life for the past seventeen months.

I’ve been in pain since she was born. It’s been a long journey of trying this and that, bloodwork, and chiropractic care, and massage therapy, and specialists, and nerve conduction tests. We have arrived at what I am calling “probable fibromyalgia” but guess what, that diagnosis could change within the next two months since I finally got in to a rheumatologist.

I’ve debated sharing this because I often feel like my blog doesn’t have much of a “niche” however, I was inspired by a fellow writer who came back into the world to announce that she had been struggling with chronic illness, Bisky. It feels important to talk about pain disorders because it feels as if pain has become less understood than depression. When I was blogging before, it was often in the constant fight against the stigmas of mental illness and suddenly we are saturated with science and anecdotal accounts in the media. Celebrities have come forward, books have been written and now the layman understands that someone who is depressed is not just sad. We still have a ways to go with the less popular illnesses like schizophrenia and bipolar but it’s been a huge leap forward. We need this for chronic pain. So here I am, adding my voice into the din.


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