Psalm 38:7 - My back is filled with searing pain; there is no health in my body.
The alarm goes off. You sit up to turn it off and your back roars at you. I did it again. I wasn’t thinking. I’d gotten out of bed incorrectly.
I tried again. This time I swung my legs over the side of the bed as I sat up with the momentum and I made it out of my bed without causing further pain.
But then. My hand reached up to my throat. It burned and every part of me ached. It appeared I also had a stuffed up head.
I couldn’t be getting sick. Pain and sickness may know each other, but I didn’t invite either one to join me that morning.
This story is true for those of us who suffer from chronic pain. Living with pain drains our resources and unfortunately usually our immune system is affected as well.
It’s wise to stay away from people who are ill if at all possible. The risk is simply too high.
When a normal person gets sick, they feel aches all over their bodies. But it’s not accompanied by severe pain. They don’t have that drain that washes chronic pain suffers’ immune system away.
Find some healthy living strategies that may help boost your immune system from health.harvard.edu in their article, “How to Boost Your Immune System Tips to Fight Disease and Strengthen Immunity,” for example take steps to avoid infection, such as washing your hands frequently and cooking meats thoroughly.
Also, many people believe they can take a shortcut by taking supplements that claim to increase your immune system. Be careful. There are those that work, but also those who don’t deliver on what they claim; only seeking your pocketbook and not your health. Some may be very good to take such as a multivitamin. There are also many herbs that work to improve your immune system.
A great choice to make is eating foods that boost your immune system. Checkout the link below and find a list of foods plus how they help.
Finally, as the Bible verse above shows, the Psalmist was in severe pain and found he had no health in his body. Thankfully, he wasn’t going through this dark valley alone. God’s love poured over him like a soothing balm and God is ready to do the same for you.
Matthew 7:25 - The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.
After having a surgery, your legs can feel wobbly as you get used to the changes made in your body.
If the surgery was in your neck, you may have some difficulty turning your head.
Aftercare for both surgery patients is to be part of physical therapy.
Physical therapy can be very taxing on your body as you stretch your muscles and use your legs on an exercise bike or treadmill.
But it is important to take seriously your therapy at a fitness center, but also home therapy.
Having surgery places your body with a clean slate. You have a chance to learn how to do things differently, what activities you will have to give up, which ones to keep and learn the right way to do things.
You need to build a new foundation. One that is built upon the rocks of exercise and eating a nutritious diet. This foundation is important. You may want to skip this part and think that you’re okay because you’ve completed your physical therapy.
Just like I said above, you are given a fresh start. It’s up to you how you will build your foundation – will it be built on the rocks of hard work and perseverance or will it be built on the sand of taking the easy way out.
Physical therapy and home exercises can be painful to do. You’ll have to go the extra mile. But if you don’t follow through and build a stronger back or neck, you’re weakness will seep into all areas of your life.
Things will begin to fall apart. Your back will become stiff from not exercising your muscles and your neck won’t turn very much.
But it’s never too late to begin home therapy and exercise. Take it a step at a time and persevere through it.
It is valuable. You are valuable, to your family and to all of the people who are in your life. When you feel like giving up find some ways to motivate yourself from dougkelsey.com in their article, “The One Thing You Must do to Motivate Yourself.”
Life after surgery can be built on a solid foundation. And as the Bible verse above says, when the rain comes down and streams rise in your life and the winds beat against your life, know that God will help you build that firm foundation. Then, you’ll be able to withstand the winds of trials and pain.
Put on those shoes. Let’s go!
Hebrews 13:21 - Equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Have you ever been asked by someone to do something that you weren’t equipped for? This not only applies to tasks you are asked to complete at work, but all other areas of your life. We’re talking about being equipped with the physical and mental strength to complete the task.
If you decide that college is where you can learn all you need to know in order to journey towards a career you’re interested in.
Others, have not completed a college degree, but have been trained in a skill or trade. The same applies as to college, you need to learn and develop the skill you need to work in the trade you’re interested in.
Thanks to the computer age, online learning has expanded and is now considered as a valid way to complete a degree right in your own home.
My question is: if you need to learn skills to pursue your career, wouldn’t you also need to learn the skills necessary to live with chronic pain or illness?
Yet, when the diagnosis comes are you set up with a “training center” to learn the skills you need to cope with your pain and learn to live life in a different way?
Unfortunately, most of the time doctors aren’t equipped to teach you how to manage your pain. This is no disrespect to doctors; however, the most you usually receive is a one-page computer print out about the pain or disease.
What can be done to help you acquire the skills you need for your life?
One of the best ways to learn about your pain is internet research. It is here that you will find answers to many of the questions you may have about your pain that will educate you on the specifics of your pain or illness.
Another method of treatment is physical therapy at a therapy center. This treatment is hands-on using massage, exercise and education to assist the patient after therapy is over. Most insurance policies will cover physical therapy for twelve sessions a year.
A third option is to be referred by your physician to a chronic pain rehabilitation center. These centers offer a whole body approach usually using a form of education, physical therapy, exercise, psychologists and occupational therapy. Unfortunately, many insurance plans don’t cover such a program.
Forth is receiving education and encouragement from psychologists and mental health therapists. Therapists can teach you how your physical pain and illness affects your mental health.
But there also is a fifth source that will equip you to live your life – the Bible. Just as the Bible verses above say, God will equip you with everything you need to do the work God has placed in front of you. Prayer and studying the Bible will help you receive the mental strength you need to live a fulfilled life even if you are suffering.
These are just a few of the ways you can acquire the skills you need for life.
In addition, choose the link below, from WebMD, which will provide you with tips to assist you as you journey through the valley of pain and illness.
If you have any suggestions that have worked for you, I’d love to hear from you.
Job 3:25 - What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me.
Suddenly, the sidewalk is racing toward you. You have only a second to react and then, what you dread has happened – you take a hard fall.
Falling can indeed be a real occurrence to dread for those who battle chronic pain. When the sidewalk rises up to greet you, it can cause further damage to a back already racked with pain or cause another area of your body to be injured and added to your list of areas subject to chronic pain.
What’s a person to do? Do you keep your eyes on the ground with each step you take and miss out on seeing the beauty of the world around you?
Do you walk slowly being careful as you move one foot in front of the other?
Or do you decide to stay indoors so you don’t risk getting hurt?
However, staying indoors may not be the answer. Your home contains places that are ready to cause you to trip and find the floor suddenly flying towards you.
Life can’t be lived looking for those dreaded ways you can suffer another injury. Life is filled not only with the chance to be injured, but also the chance to have fun or find a new adventure.
So how do we keep a balance from needing to be careful with looking for ways to enjoy life? Find some ideas on tinybuddha.com in their article, “Body Betrayal: How to Cope with Chronic Pain and Illness,” such as focusing on what you can do not what you can't.
Also, remember that even if what you dread comes knocking at your door you don’t have to be afraid. God is right there with you and will help calm your fears.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.