i woke up at 3.30am this morning with my back giving me what can only be described as flashes of white hot agony. That’s not including all the pain in my joints and other muscles. I think that this morning, the only thing that doesn’t hurt is my hair. It’s hell. I honestly believe, were I an animal, that a vet would take pity and say that I needed to be put to sleep. But as a human, I am left to grit my teeth and suffer.
When did all of this begin? Way, way back in my late teens. I had been experiencing a lot of joint and muscle pain. I went to see my GP and after copious amounts of blood tests, X-rays and scans, I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. I was relieved that I had a answer for why I hurt so much. Then I asked my GP if he could give me something to help with all of the pain that I was going through. You know what he said to me? Due to your age, I won’t give you strong painkillers. Take paracetamol and ibuprofen for pain. Strike one asshole. I cannot take Ibuprofen because of my asthma. It triggers asthma attacks. So I’m left with paracetamol only. Not cool.
I just had to grit my teeth and get on with life. I trained as a nurse, and I cooed with the pain. I fought through some days of sheer hell, but I got through it. Then, for personal reasons, in 2005 I had to quit nursing. I took up a part time job in my local food shop. I worked there until February of 2009. That was when my body decided to really knock me on my ass.
I woke up one morning in February of 2009 and was unable to move. It was so painful to even try I was sobbing. I called work to say I was going to be ill, then called my doctor. I begged for an emergency appointment. My friend drove me in. I was still in my pyjamas. Getting dressed was just not n option – everything hurt so much. The doctor was very attentive. He referred me to a Rheumatologist and also to an orthopaedic consultant. I was prescribed Gabapentin, Tramadol and Co-Codamol. They didn’t do much to take the pain away, but at least they dulled it. I was given a three month sick note from work.
After lots of prodding and poking and tests and X-rays, I got my diagnoses. I have a spinal deformity called a lordosis and also I have osteoarthritis in my spine, hips and knees. As well as that I was diagnosed with osteoporosis and hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Chostochondritis and Fibromyalgia. That day finished my working life, I was medically retired soon after.
So that has been my life ever since. Pain. Pain and more pain. My GP said I was on the maximum pain relief. Then I read an article in which people with far less of a diagnosis than me were on morphine and all kinds of other stronger drugs. What the hell? I went back to my GP and demanded to be referred to the hospital pain clinic for assessment. I am now on a waiting list to be seen.
I don’t care what they give me. I just want my pain to stop.