"Living With Chronic Pain" (Part 3)
"Don't get too close, it's dark inside, it's where my demons hide.
It was a constant battle in my mind. I wanted that high and I also needed to get out of pain. Once you begin using pills to get high, you need to use more and more to just to feel that high. Your chasing a high that you won't get like you did the very first time. That's why it's called "Chasing The Dragon". You have to use more to maintain just so your body feels normal. You don't feel a high like you first did but it still feels good. All you think about is MORE and you watch the clock to see if it's time yet for your next pill. The pain was just so bad that I wasn't able to do a lot of things. Especially with my kids. I wanted to be out of pain so I could go do things with my kids. It was a battle doing housework. I have an OCD with cleaning. I would clean with my music blasted up high and dance and act crazy with the kids. Even though it hurt my back more, I still did it. I started doing aerobics and weight training when I was sixteen. I was addicted to exercise also. I would even dance for my aerobics. I love dancing. It was always a passion of mine to become a dancer. But, it was great exercise and it would hurt my back really bad but I had to lose weight. I didn't care how painful it was. I just thought after awhile the pain would get better instead of worse because I was strengthening my muscles. Little did I know, my Chiropractor told me that aerobics is good of course, but I should have strengthened my core first. So, I probably injured myself more. After I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, I realized that's what made me stop exercising during my pregnancy with Joshua. When we lived in CA. I just got to exhausted and painful to keep up with my aerobics and Yoga. It really made me angry that I had to stop. Not only did I have a good looking body and nice muscles, but it gave me the energy I needed and I knew it was helping my body not get worse.
So, I became really depressed even more so than I was. Living with Chronic pain was just hard. I had pain I had to deal with even when I sleep. I couldn't sleep more than 4-5 hours because it would hurt my back and hips from laying to long. I have bad hip pain from the fractured pelvis I got from the car accident. My Chiropractor did x-rays of my pelvis and said I had a twisted pelvis. I don't see how that's possible but I need a second opinion on that. I have 2 herniated disks in my low back and bone spurs, which are painful, on my spine. I also have scoliosis that I was born with. The drs. said that causes more pain than a slipped disk. I have joint and disk disease which is really bad arthritis in my lower back. I have Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I have plantar Fasciitis on my feet. which means they get very painful from standing after just 5 min. I have Migraines which have lessened but I get spinal headaches I call them because I can't lean my back against anything or it goes right to the back of my head and causes an explosive headache. It lasts 3 days at times. I have a broken coccyx bone which makes it hard for me to sit long. I def can't sit on those hard chairs.
I have lived with this chronic pain since I was 19. I would do things like go to the zoo for my kids even though it killed me. I forced myself to do a lot of things to take the kids places. After they got older, my pain got worse and worse. So, I'm glad I was able to do a lot of things with them before I got this bad. It's very depressing having to live in pain all the time. I grew up with severe depression and anxiety and that got worse of course because of me and my husband arguing a lot. There were a lot of times my own husband would say I was faking it. That really hurt. I mean it's hard enough dealing with this pain and hating the fact that I can't do much besides stay in bed, let alone having someone who supposedly loves you, say your faking it. Yeah, I wish I was faking. Having your own husband who lives with you and sees the pain your going through and begging for back rubs because it was worse at night, and than him go and say that your faking it to our friends at church and our own kids. Instead of supporting me, he just made up lies and started to put the focus on him.
The counselor we were seeing together and I also saw her on my own, she explained to him that I had PTSD, from being raped 3 times and being with abusive men and my father. She said I have Bi-polar, PTSD, and Borderline Personality Disorder. So, he started to focus on having PTSD himself. From being in Iraq. Now, I told him he may have that and than he just forgot all about me and started telling everyone that he had PTSD and he just always talked about himself. It was always like that. He either always talked about being a Soldier or Fireman. It just got really old. I was always there to support him and listen but he never was for me. He didn't understand Addiction and didn't care to learn about it and support me. Even the kids got sick of hearing him. Yeah, after things got worse with him throwing things at me and his yelling scaring the kids he told me to get out. I knew I could stay but I also knew it was a bad idea because it was really affecting the kids and myself. The stress and anxiety made my pain worse. I screamed at him so I'm not saying I was perfect. It was hard not to scream back when he would say the most cruel things to me in front of the kids.
Anyhow, the last 2 years I was still living there, my addiction got so bad that I had to put myself in rehab. I was withdrawing really bad because I failed the doctor drug test. I took some Percocet's that was left over from my sons surgery. He was done them so I took them and he saw them on the drug test and he kicked me out as a patient. I went through the pure evil and hell of withdrawing. I swore I'd never touch those again because the hell of withdraw is just pure evil. I hated my kids seeing me like that but I told them this is what you'll go through if you get hooked on pills. You get a constant runny nose, chills real bad, sweats, leg cramps and your skin feels like it's on fire. You want to punch your legs cause the pain is just horrible. It just feels like the flu, only ten times stronger! But I knew it was time to get off those,. I didn't want those to damage my liver or kidneys and I knew it was causing me to have serious mood swings. I would get angry easily. I got off them and was clean for two years before he kicked me out. I was going to meetings and did 4 different meetings. It was very hard at first because after being on pills all my life basically, since I was 19, that's all I knew. I now had no pills. I was on 2 opiates and a muscle relaxer that was also addicting. Soma. I loved the high I got from taking all those together. But, I was used to popping a pill when I was in pain, when I was stressed or upset, when I was bored or angry. I used all kinds of excuses. So, I would take Tylenol and Motrin but I knew too much Tylenol was bad so I couldn't take a lot. It was just hard not having any pills.
It was just really hard dealing with pain everyday and all day. It would get worse at night but it was all day constant pain. I tried to not complain because I know how annoying that is. But, yeah, I suffer silently. I hate that it controls my life. The Fibromyalgia is just horrible. You have all kinds of ailments with that alone. It causes headaches, body aches, joint pain, you can't stand cold or hot weather, chest pain, and your skin is sensitive as well. My kids would joke around and hit me on my arm and I would yell with pain. It stings bad. There are many symptoms.
I have relapsed and got some pain pills and even started to snort them. Being away from my kids has took a big piece of my heart with them. I was lost when I left and moved back home with my parents. It felt like they were kidnapped. My ex-husband told them I wanted to leave. I was just so empty. I went from being a wife and mother, to nothing. I can't see my sons because they live 3 hours away and my daughter moved to CA. with her boyfriend. It was so bad the first year home. I couldn't think of them or talk about them without crying bad. It was hard to look at pictures of them without breaking down and just thinking about my youngest son and needing mama. It was so bad that I got back to drinking again almost every night. I have the opportunity to write now. I've allowed the depression to make me not want to read or write. In order to write, you have to do a lot of reading as well. I had to get back on depression pills to help me. I also got a mood stabilizer for the bi-polar. I have mild bi-polar. Mainly the bi-polar depression. It will paralyze you. So, I have severe depression also because of being in pain a lot. I want to get back on pills because of the pain but I know I developed an addiction to them so it's not a good idea. I am working on my Memoir and doing my daily writing. I am doing a writing class now and it's helping me out. I just need to focus on that right now. I don't drive yet because the accident left me fearful. I am still very afraid and seeing all these accidents and the way people drive just kills me with fear. It's also my brain injury that has me worried about driving. I fear that I will mess up like not paying attention because I have a problem focusing on things.
I got addicted to snorting pills. This guy I was with started me on that. I told him to please never use in front of me because I was addicted to cocaine at one point and loved snorting it. So, he cut up the pill in front of me and sniffed it so that made me want to try it. I got really addicted though. I'm still off the alcohol and pills too. So, I need to stay from people who use and drs. that would be willing to give them to me. So, it's hard having pain and nothing to help but I know if I get back on them, it's pointless because you'll always have to go up in dose and your body just gets addicted to them and you feel worse pain because your body is used to them so you need higher doses and you start withdrawing after 4 hrs. Not bad withdraw because your still taking them but when you start withdrawing, I call it like thawing out. Your body feels everything. I felt worse back pain. I know when I stopped for those 2 years, my back hurt but not like it did when I was on them. I felt all kinds of pain while I was on them. So, I know it's just not worth getting back on them. I can't control my addiction so what's the point and getting on them and risking my addiction get worse? Drugs always leads to either jail or death. It's not worth it. A lot of addicts think they can control it their self but you just can't. I've quit alcohol and cocaine by myself. I can stop on my own but I can't be around them or else it will get out of control and I'll start using again. My kids need me alive. I may not be able to see them now but I know things will change soon and I'll be able to see them and I need to be clean for myself and for them! I refuse to allow my addiction to control me or kill me. I also can't be a good writer if I'm using. So, I just thought I'd share my story for anyone struggling with chronic pain and or pill addiction.
I know there are other ways like doing light aerobics and light weight lifting to help with pain. I can use other things to help instead of pills. I've tried to needles in my back but that didn't work. I know eating healthy and not smoking can help as well. I'm staying focused on what exercises my chiropractor taught me to do and losing some of this belly will help with back pain. I gained some weight over the last 4 years. It's been hard but I'm sticking with the program and staying focused on my writing. Writing is my passion and I can't wait to publish this book!!