Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Lessons and Life

Sorry I've been MIA lately, things have just been stressful, hectic and extremely emotional. As always we learn and discover things that haven't been thought of before when we go through tough times. My lessons-- friends can be amazing if you let them, you need to express yourself, and we really do need to take time for ourselves. Three big whoppers all at once.

It all started when things "blew up" with me and my boyfriend of two years. And by blow up I don't mean some dramatic event, but essentially we realized that things were really off lately. Looking back I realized that I was mostly to blame. Why? Because I wasn't expressing how I truly felt. Yes I would let him know that I was in pain and that I was sad/upset/fed up, but I never really explained it to him. And because of that we began to grow distant. He would get upset with me and I would get upset with him and honestly neither of us really knew why. We sat down and talked about it, well I mumbled incoherently through tears, but I digress. We decided that we would take a break and in order to give me time to get my stuff together. Well as soon as we said those words, everything clicked and started to fall into place. (We've since gotten back together =)

I realized that I needed to truly express myself and my feelings. What I've never realized or admitted to myself was that being in pain all of the time is ridiculously taxing mentally and emotionally. There was such a great disconnect in my mind. Yes I knew I was in pain but I never stopped to think about how that affects my mental state and my emotional state. What a breakthrough!

Once I realized that, I knew that I needed to start focusing on myself more. Take more "me time."

I also realized through this that friends can be truly wonderful if you allow them to be. I never really told anyone how I was really feeling because I was afraid that I'd wind up being the "Debbie downer." I just wanted to be normal. Well, if you sit down with a friend and express how you're actually feeling without editing the icky stuff, you'd be surprised how receptive and understanding they can be. I sure was.

It's exactly like what Jenni from says...we need to build a supportive team. And through this almost break-up I've started doing that. I now let my friends know exactly how I'm feeling. If they suggest going to see a movie and I'm not feeling up to snuff and not really down for sitting in agony throughout a movie, I'm going to let them know that at this time my body isn't ready to sit still for two hours, but I could be up for x y or z. It's really simply once you initially do it.

Onto the last lesson. This one was probably the most difficult for me. I decided that I had had enough of my doctor throwing random prescriptions at me without listening to me and I dumped him. So I made an appointment with a pain management physician at a local hospital and she seems pretty good. We've got a plan--Elavil, Lyrica (again), Zanaflex, and Lidocane patches. I'm not sure about all these medications but I'm willing to give it a go. I've also started doing "Body Balance" which is a liquid vitamin whose resorption rate is much higher than regular vitamins. In addition to this I've worked out a plan with my old chiropractor who is now willing to give me light adjustments every couple of weeks. (I can't have them as frequently or as "rough" as others because of my bone disorder, OI)

It's a start, I'm not sure if any of it is going to work out, but I'm excited about it and I am willing to try it.

Isn't it amazing how something can seem so horrific but can really bring such joy and happiness?

It's important for us young people to really communicate with others. Explain things in detail. Yea we might come across as weird, abnormal, freakish, hypochondriacs, a waste of time, etc. but we aren't! We deserve the right to feel stress-free, pain-free(ish), and happy. Unfortunately we're the only ones who can change that, we're the only ones who can make a difference in our lives. And it really does start with opening up and just talking. Make sure that those you surround yourself with know what you're going through. You can't expect them to understand and empathize if they don't know anything. My one friend told me that she had not idea what kind of pain I was in, she assumed that it was like her when she woke up with a crick in her neck or whatever. By simply telling her that my pain is different and in an attempt to describe it she now has a better grasp on what I deal with day-in and day-out. And I'm not saying that you need to share every single detail, but just open up the lines of communication.

I promise you, you won't regret it.

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