I look outside the window. The sun is shining, and boats pass by on the water. The water is flat, peaceful; there’s so much beauty outside my window.
I’m in a lot of pain. I can feel the surgical work my surgeon did to my back, something I don’t wish for anyone to experience.
I feel empty and exhausted. In ways I feel overwhelmed, trying to adapt to my new body. Every day, I see improvements, which is exciting. However, there are days that it feels like I’ve taken three steps forward and ten steps back.
At the moment, I’m unable to think clearly. My brain is feeding me a bunch of bullshit that others view me as a drug seeker, looking for pain medication. In the past, I’ve been viewed like this, which has been traumatic. My providers remind me that they don’t see me like this. They know I need it, and that I’m responsible using them.
Often patients who deal with chronic pain are viewed as drug addicts. There are many people who abuse opioids, which makes it harder for those who truly need them to get access. Because of the opioid epidemic, it’s harder for medical professionals to prescribe them.
Pain affects one’s ability to function. Think about it; how is someone supposed to get through the day when they feel horrible? Pain can be debilitating, and often medication is needed to help alleviate some of the intensity. When someone lives with chronic pain, they learn to fight through it and not to show how they truly feel.
One of my favorite nurses came into my room, and I told her what was on my mind. She reminded me that it’s okay to need pain medication; my situation requires them. I can’t beat myself up for needing to take them. It’s working, which is all that matters.
I appreciated my nurse coming in and talking to me about it. I needed to talk about it, and I’m glad she listened. Medical trauma is real.
Thankfully, tomorrow is a new day.