Friday, April 03, 2009

Pain Tolerance Or Just Tired Of Hearing Myself Complain?...

Yowsa, my right Gonad has decided to put it's vice grip of love in my lower back and hip!!! (No, it's NOT the now infamous "MS HUG"...been there, done that...and this is different.) Yes, I concede...this has now become *painful*. It's not that it DIDN'T hurt/ache before. It's just the pain has now changed to something I like a whole lot less...I had grown somewhat used to its constant presence in my kidney/mid back area. Now, my right hip feels like it is on fire internally and my low back muscles are being pinched with pliers. How's THAT for a pain description (because using the *pliers* example was far more politically correct than saying "the muscles in my lower back feel like a nipple that is being pinched and twisted")?

I was talking to one of my wise Guides last night, who asked how I was doing, and I mentioned I was not having a great day because my lower back and side ached so much...most likely from my "ALARMINGLY LARGE, PROBABLE OVARIAN CYST(s)".

A look of concern fell over her face (even though I was on the phone...I've seen this look before in person) and she asked, "Well, aren't you supposed to do something now?" She was referring to my ARNP's statement of possibly developing *pain of epic proportions* should my gonad decide to rupture or leak.

I pondered her question (albeit, only briefly, as no trips to *DoAnythingville* were scheduled on my calendar) and replied, "No, this isn't horrible...yet." And I proceeded to rationalize what *pain of epic proportions* would really FEEL like...I was pretty certain my symptom of pain was still well below that threshold. And I DO have my narcotics, after all (said with slurred speech and drooling lips).

She then told me (I'm certain with same look of concern on her face, but no web cam phone to prove it), "I'm worried about your pain tolerance and know you might not go see somebody for this until it's over the top."

WOOT?!?

Alrighty then...I KNOW what she was referring to...coming from someone who is rarely sick/in pain with anything (and has never been hospitalized, had a surgery, broken a bone, etc.), it would be hard for my friend to grasp what *pain of epic proportions* would mean. In HER mind, my pain complaint MUST be over the top...because it is new and it is THERE (yes, I DO have a friend who is remarkably healthy...BETCH). And she knows I live with pain on a daily basis from MS-related issues, so THIS pain must be of *epic proportions* if it is worse than my usual run-of-the-mill pain.

I don't think there is really anything scientifically sound in referring to a "pain tolerance"...I think it is probably wiser to refer to one's ability to withstand painful suffering as a "complain tolerance"...after all, the pain is already present or we wouldn't know we were TOLERATING it. It's just at what level of pain do some people choose to say something OUT LOUD while others don't?

It seems my friend has decided over the years of knowing me, that my lack of COMPLAINT about my daily pain was a "tolerance"...hehe...boy, do I have HER fooled! I am a purebred WIENER when it comes to pain!!!

Pain annoys and angers me...it causes me fear when it changes or is a new sensation...it makes me sulk and be sullen when it interferes with doing the things I want (or need) to do...it does NOT make me more tolerant of it the longer and more intense I FEEL pain. Actually, quite the contrary is true...I think I have become increasingly INTOLERANT of pain since my MS diagnosis...because it's just ONE more gift of MS that just keeps on giving.

What I DO try to do is spread my complaints about my pain around so as not to seem like a "whiner" (or Wiener Whiner, which is worse)...we all HATE whiners, now don't we? It's a matter of survival. I NEED my friends to survive...and I fear my constant complaints about my aches and pains WILL eventually drive them away (or to the alcohol bottle, which eventually will mean they love and spend more time with the sauce than ME!). I have *X* friend who I schedule in to complain about my pain on Monday, *Y* friend, who gets the brunt of my painful verbiage on Tuesday, and *Z* friend who is bombarded with my troubles and woes on Wednesday, and so on. (Stop checking your calendars, dear friends...YOUR day will come!)

OK, maybe I don't REALLY have my friends scheduled to bear the weight of my complaints on any give day (or DO I?!?), but you get the picture. And much of my pain/condition/aches, I HAVE grown used to or accepted...it's not that the pain is gone, it's just I know complaining about it (after all these years of daily assault) ISN'T going to make it go away...so why waste my precious energy of flapping my lips and betching? I've simply developed a COMPLAIN TOLERANCE.

I think if ANYONE has a high *pain tolerance*, it is most likely my friends who listen to my redundant complaints and always act like it is the first time they've heard the information (and the Grammy nomination goes to?)...I'm quite certain being friends with me causes spasms in their "necks" and "arses" on a fairly regular basis! Now THAT is a *pain tolerance* to praise...LOL...

9 comments:

Jen said...

I'm sorry that you're in so much PAIN. I don't know what else to say that wouldn't sound like a broken record.

have myelin said...

I'll say it again and again. Get thee to the vet. Errr...I mean ER. I know last night was the last episode but you know what I mean. Get going.

Spaz Attack said...

See, this post is yet another example why I read your blog -- I seem to go through the same thought patterns as you.

I will tell you that according to the surgon at the time ignoring, and then delaying gall bladder surgery for six weeks because I needed (wanted) to meet a work deadline) almost cost me my life. After, the doctor wouldn't release me a few days because of bleeding. Of course, looking back...at that time I was worth so many more $$ I wish I HAD died. Hey..it would have been a legit way to go!

pUNKrOCKfairy said...

Your fear of "being a whiner" makes me think you might've had parents like mine. They were pretty permissive but did not, would not, could not tolerate lying or whining.

It is near impossible for me to answer the question, "How are you?," with, "Fine thanks," when my feet are on fire and I can't make my legs move right. It's a LIE, but it feels better than burdening some random well-wisher with the truth. I am also paralyzed with fear at the prospect of being labeled a whiner. Especially at work! I would rather suffer in silence than feel like my coworkers are "picking up my slack."

The self-inflicted stress from these gifts of character I received from my folks is sometimes a bit overwhelming. Do you have this problem too? At what point do you feel it's ok to say, "Alright, my shit hurts really bad, and I want drugs and then I want everyone to feck off and leave me alone."?

Denver Refashionista said...

I'm with Punk rock fairy. I always want to ignore and minimize things. I worry that it's all in my head.

BTW, can you email me a little more about the hug. I have been having struggles with breathing and chest pain and I don't know what to think.

Thanks. I hope you feel better soon.

Miss Chris said...

"Pain of epic proportions"... I'd try and avoid that at all costs... Just my 2 cents. :)

Blindbeard said...

I have a very high pain tolerance, which is why I do not go to the doctor until things have gotten WAY out of hand. When I finally raised the white flag with endometriosis (didn't know that was the problem yet), after telling my sister about my pain and her telling me it was NOT normal to feel that way, I went to the doctor and by then my left ovary was twice it's normal size and had failed. My right ovary was so diseased and the endometriosis had spread all over my poor guts, that there were really no options for me but a hysterectomy. They did not think I could produce any healthy eggs and I did not think I wanted to have kids anyway, so it was an easy decision to go under the knife. Now THAT was painful! It has now been over 7 period-free years so it was worth it.

Anne said...

I ignored gall bladder pain because I thought it was something to do with my Crohn's Disease.

You are ignoring gall bladder pain because it may be ----- ovarian cyst????

Get to the doc and get a CT scan on that gall bladder. Then get it out.

Doctor's orders!
Anne

Michelle said...

Yep Linda. We tend to adapt and adjust to our pain until we call it our normal pain. My pain threshold was breached briefly with my gallstone attack, but as I reminisce about my daily pain over the last say 35 years, I have definitely grown a tolerance. Although, I tend to let out unconscious moans now that I used to be able to control. My inner censor, that kept me silent before must be affected by, gee, let's see, maybe the MS. lol Hope your seemingly "new" pain does not increase and they fix that gonad problem soon. Hang in there.
Stay inspired!
Michelle
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