April 4: I write about my health because…

Its a good question. Why did I, or for that matter any of us health bloggers, begin to write about our struggles? Several years before I started my website Hubs suggested I become a blogger. My answer was a firm, No! I cope better with the pain by putting it out of my mind as much as possible. Over the years I have become highly skilled in distracting my mind from the pain (though I am not so successful during flare-ups!), so why would I allow myself to write about the subject? Thinking about pain brings it to my attention, negating my coping strategy.

So why did I change my mind? Ultimately I wanted to add my voice to other bloggers and activists, to increase our visibility and accessibility on the internet. The reason is because I don’t want anyone else to feel as alone and isolated as I once felt. The onset of chronic pain in my life was sudden and terrifying. No one could see what I was feeling and almost no one believed it was real. Before long I was in too much pain to work. All my hopes and plans vanished.

It took many years to build a new life. And only in recent years, after I had already learned to manage my pain alone, did I find the support and resources I needed all those years ago. Through the internet I found excellent ideas, resources, and organizations for chronic pain and illness that had never once been mentioned to me in all those years, in all those doctor’s offices – not even one time!

So on my good pain days, and even my average pain days, I am happy to be more aware of the pain for a while. In fact I feel that its the least I can do. And it will all be worth it if even one person feels less terrified and less alone for a little while.