Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A Few Words on Pain

Pain is not an easy thing to live with - especially when you don't know what's causing it.

Last Thursday while getting dressed after my shower, abdominal cramps suddenly struck me. They were fierce. I had no idea why they'd hit me. Could it have been the extra ab crunches I did at my work-out? But no. I had done that numerous times before. So, I got a heating pad and laid on my bed, hoping that this was merely tempoary and would resolve by the morning.

Oh, how wrong I was.

Early Friday morning, I woke up and felt something strange in my left shoulder blade. When I tried to get up, I was hit with an excruciating pain. When I say excruciating, I mean it was worse than labor pain. Since I delivered my daughter without benefit of pain medication, I know what I'm talking about. The rest of my body also seemed to be one whole mass of pain. I could barely get out of bed. The shoulder pain attacked me twice more - and I literally screamed from the agony. That is pain, folks.

To make a long story short, I went to the doctor, who thought it was my gallbladder. But the blood tests came back normal (they also did an EKG on my heart since it was my left shoulder blade that hurt so badly) and that came back normal, as well. They scheduled me for an abdominal ultrasound on Monday morning. That meant I had to get through the weekend.

Well, I made it through the weekend with pain meds and lots of naps. I also journaled a lot. Somehow, that seemed to keep me focused.

Monday morning arrived and I underwent the ultrasound. It came back normal.

So. As of this writing, I am still in pain - though not the shoulder pain, thank goodness, which is supposedly referred pain from whatever is going on in my abdomen - and am laying in bed with a heating pad on my stomach. I haven't been to work since Thursday. I am out of sick/personal/vacation days as of today. Any more days off will be unpaid, and I really cannot afford that.

I'm frustrated and really, really tired of being in pain. I've researched my symptoms on the 'Net which somehow doesn't give me any answers but only frustrates me more. My friends and family have been awesome, sending me emails and texts, trying to keep my spirits up, and offering advice.

And there in the corner is my journal. I think I've written in it every day since this all started (and we're going on day 6 now). Writing keeps me focused and helps me to work through the pain. There, I can vent and put all my frustration on the page and no one needs to see it but me. Miraculously, I also worked on my novel a bit the other day. What else is there to do when walking hurts and the only thing that makes you feel halfway comfortable is lying prostrate in bed? All I can say is, thank the Lord for laptops.

As I lay here in bed now, with my laptop and a heating pad on my poor crampy stomach, my cat sitting next to me (she has rarely left my side), I feel a bit of bliss wash over me when I think of my novel and my writing. That world doesn't hold any physical pain for me. I'm able to transcend that pain in the midst of my words. It's a glorious place of escape that I desperately need during this time.

I'm off to a different doctor tomorrow to see if they can shed some light on this malady. Any prayers you can say would be a great help. :-)


  1. My love and prayers are with you Melissa, it sounds awful what you are enduring right now, you wee thing! I'm really thinking of you and telepathically sending good thoughts your way. You are very, very much in my thoughts and in the next hour as I go to bed I will be saying a special prayer just for 'you.' Take care dear lady. Yours, P x

  2. Thank you so much, Paddy. Your kindness means a great deal to me. :-)

  3. Oh, I'm so sorry Melissa. I'll pray for you, too. I've dealt with horrific pain, much like what you've talked about. The stop you cold, am I having a child sort of pain.

    My issues are endometriosis and celiac disease - just to give you two things to check for. I hope you get some answers, soon.

  4. Sending up some serious prayers!!!! Feel better. Don't shy away from the Advil.

  5. How horrible for you. I do hope that they find out what's causing you so much pain and sort it out quickly for you.

  6. Not knowing the source can't make you feel any better! I hope the doctor tomorrow is able to help you ... Best wishes for a speedy recovery :)

  7. Thanks, Debs and Joanne! I'm now scheduled for a CT abdominal scan tomorrow. Hopefully I'll get some answers!

  8. Mo, I hope they either figure it out soon, or it goes away quickly! Get well wishes heading your way.

  9. Thanks so much, Gail! Hope things are going well on your end, too, and the little one isn't giving you too much trouble. :-)

  10. This sounds terrible, Melissa! I'm so sorry. I hope you find a solution soon. Pain bites. : (

  11. Unremitting pain is horrible, and not knowing what's causing it makes it even worse. I hope the CT gives some answers. You're in my thoughts and hopes for a speedy recovery!

  12. RT and Christine - Thanks for the comments. I'm on the road to recovery now!


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