Seeking reasons to stay alive

I am going through some dark days. Anyone who has happened across this blog will know about my battle with chronic pain. It’s a battle I have been fighting for more than two years now, and it’s a battle I’m finding it harder and harder to fight. It frightens me to think of the number of hospital visits I have made, the number of medics I have seen, and the number of procedures I have gone through, not to mention the amount of money I have spent.

And yet, and yet, the pain is more deep-rooted and widespread now than at any time in the past. It’s wrapped around my lower back and my left thigh. It digs in and through me – and no pill, no opiad, no medication of any kind can make a dent in it.

I try being more positive, I’m trying journaling, I walk a lot, but nothing seems to make the slightest impact.

I’m awaiting news on a spinal cord stimulator, but though I want to have that procedure, I’m also scared of having it. It will mean more surgery on my already fragile body, and of course there is no guarantee that it will ease my pain. If I were to have it, and it did not work, I doubt that I could cope with the disappointment.

I know that in many ways I am lucky. I have a community that supports me and that allows me to do as little or as much work as I can manage. I don’t have to worry about my next meal or how I will pay for a consultant’s visit.

But it makes me feel guilty, too. Because I earn nothing, and my tear-filled, sorrowful presence only upsets people. I am making no contribution.

And as each day turns out as miserable as the one that went before, I wonder about my future, for I know that I cannot go on living like this. I do not have the strength. My spirit is sapping. My motivation is slipping. My faith is weak. I can’t take much more.

And so I seek reasons to keep on going. What is life if there is no happiness? Why go on if there is only spirit-crushing, unrelenting pain, day after day, week after week? I do try to hold on for the sake of my mother and my family, and because I have enjoyed being alive for the 52 pain-free years that I had, and because I want to build up the life of the community and the church.

But it’s difficult.

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Author: frommypulpit

I'm a Redemptorist preacher and writer, with an interest in history, politics, and sport, who is living with chronic back pain.

One thought on “Seeking reasons to stay alive”

  1. It is horribly difficult, Gerry. I don’t know how I would cope…but if we have faith then I guess we have to believe that there is a reason for this and it will emerge….you have something you didn’t and don’t even know you have at the moment, to offer to the world. I wish I knew what! Hold on….just hold on….keep preaching, writing and looking out ward. Find those who are worse off than yourself and see if you can find a reason and a reason to hope. Know this above all you are greatly loved…even when you are being a miserable bugger…do I really say that! There is one thing worse tha your daily battle with pain….remember this…it is watching Liverpoool!!!😄😄 Take care my lovely friend (minus the wonderful Hamish). Xx

    Liked by 3 people

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