Is enough ever enough in a life with chronic pain?
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As the unsinkable Molly Brown would say, "UNCLE, UNCLE." Don't you hate those days when enough is enough already? Any of us who live with chronic pain every "friggin'" day of our lives know, it is never enough. Something is always coming at you down the plank of life. What I would give, some days, just to have one day without pain, one day without some infection raging somewhere in my body or some other painful reminder that I am not whole, healthy or "normal."
I'm afraid this condition we all live with is something that's anathema to others. How can someone who wakes in the morning tired but sated from sleep know what it is like for those of us who awake from a dream state to "this." I don't see this as self-pity; really, I see it more as the grim reality of life from inside this less than perfect body of mine. Perhaps it is my fault for not informing others more fully of what life is like for me, but most of the time I think those near and dear to me run out of steam on that old compassion train and simply turn a deaf ear to what I'm experiencing. There's no blame. A person can only take so much; so much complaining, so much suffering, so much life altering experiences with it's adaptations. I'm talking about those in my life that have to put up with me. For me, well, you know the story.
I find myself working very hard to make life worthwhile for those I love. I'm naturally a sunny person but there are days the clouds roll in. On those days I tend to isolate myself for fear of spreading my rancor to others. I also, just don't have the energy to interact with them. Those are the days I do something to feel useful, however small it might be. Sometimes it's just a load of laundry, running the Roomba on the floors or cleaning the toilets. After fulfilling my need for useful I reward myself with a good book, an old movie or a phone call to a dear friend. Dear friends are the only ones I have left. I find I have eliminated most casual acquaintances from my life as well as individuals who continually irritate me. I just don't have the patience or quite frankly, the time or energy to deal. Does that make me a witch? It probably does but "quite frankly Scarlett, I don't give a damn."
Am I cranky or just pragmatic? Am I still a likable, kind, loving person? I sure try to be but some people don't deserve the effort it takes me to be all of those things. Over the course of recent years I have developed a code of behavior that I am proud to live by. It may not suit everyone; it doesn't have to. When I look in the mirror each day, I have to like the person I see looking back at me. She is no longer pretty, she is no longer young but I have to like and respect her, anyway. She's all I have left. Marred, broken and miserable so much of the time, I can still feel grateful for all the beautiful things in my life. If that lousy glass was half-empty all the time, well, I just don't think I could go on. I have to see the fluid in the full half. I have to laugh every day, or it just isn't a complete day for me. My grandchildren, my dogs and often, my spouse, offer me those chortles. My kids who are now adults, as well as their spouses are all individuals to love and in whom I have great pride and affection. I may not have much on those days I've had enough, but sometimes a little will have to suffice. Hanging on by a thread is all you can do until a stronger piece of life's fabric comes along.
Video: Is it ever enough? | Pastor Steven Furtick
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