Pain Management Program day 16

Good Morning Nervous System!

Yesterday, I shared about the manual therapy that I received and the warning that I may be sore today. And then it rained all night. I’m not sure whether it was one, the other or both but my system was at full throttle. I had restless sleep. My top sheet, blanket and bedspread were turned every which way. I remember waking in the night not able to find any of them and then trying to toss them all around to cover me. I wasn’t surprised when I woke up thinking this will be a long day.

So tonight I am wanting to share what my day was like. I’m going to stay away from the “pain talk”. It’s not good for me and it’s not my intent to set the stage for how bad my day was or was not. But I want to acknowledge that I’m going to have days like this and there are ways that they are perceived by me and how others see me when I feel this way. I also want others that have chronic pain to get a picture of what it looks like to continue to pace through a bad day.

Every morning we start with group exercises. I was the first to the gym, started the coffee and had my mat ready to go before anyone else arrived. As we started the exercises I was being quiet. I tried not to grunt and groan as I moved from one position to the next. The PT that was leading our session made a remark that she was trying to get me to smile. I’m not sure she knew that I was having a flare up.

My next session was a lesson about anger management. I did fairly well as far as staying connected with the presentation but I kept stretching, rubbing and guarding as the pain was working my body. After that I met with the psychologist. I struggled with the thought that I didn’t want to bring up the amount of pain I had this morning. But I also knew he could help me work through the mental anguish I was having over the flare up. He had told me that if I hadn’t mentioned the pain or the flare up he wouldn’t have known. There is another participant in the program that I have spent a lot of time with. We have ‘clicked’ as far as encouraging and prodding each other. I thought for sure that she would have noticed. When I mentioned it to her she said no.

So that’s how the day continued. A class after lunch on communication, and then a session in the therapeutic pool and ending with a progressive muscle relaxation session. All afternoon I felt like a train wreck. I kept thinking through all of this that I needed to stick with the plan. This is the time when I get to tell the central nervous system that it is being inappropriate. All of the previous days I have been challenging the nervous system with exercise and quieting the muscles with ice and the nervous system with relaxation.

Today was the like the ‘main event’ after a lot of tryouts. Tomorrow, my wife will join me in the day’s activities and I’ll take today as a battle won in the war against chronic pain.

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