When you live with chronic pain every single day is a challenge. You’re expected to go on with life, as if you’re body’s not screaming out for relief. You have to get up, (grumble, grumble), live your daily life just like everyone else, (mumble, mumble), when you just feel like curling up in a ball and crying yourself to sleep. But sleep is darned near impossible because you have a hard time getting comfortable. So, you punch pillows, curse, pray….whatever it takes.
You try to explain to people who couldn’t possibly understand, and they call you a whiner. You feel guilty for mentioning it to your family, when you know they see you struggling. “Hey, uh..did you know I’m in pain over here. Get your own sandwich”. Add some family drama or other stressful events to this, and you have the perfect setting for a meltdown. (Meltdown is putting it nicely.)
I create so I can feel alive. I want to feel like my existence is more than that of a person who lives with chronic pain. I want to be someone.
For a couple of months, I’ve challenged myself to create something new every morning. You’ll never see some of these things. I don’t feel comfortable sharing them.
My newest challenge is to put everything into my work. All my feelings, all my thoughts, all my hopes, dreams, fears–all that stuff–will be going into my work. Yes, there will be pain. It’s part of my daily existence.
I wasn’t thinking of angels when I started this digital painting. My thoughts were only on the work I was creating. It was a rare time when I was totally absorbed in what I was doing. As I added the finishing touches, my thoughts went elsewhere. I shared a bit about those thoughts with a close friend. Friends and family make the challenge worth it.
If I could only share one message with you all, it would be to challenge yourselves. Even if that challenge is to just live in whatever moment it is that you’ve been given, really live, even despite the challenges of that moment.