A Life of Suffering or a Life Worth Living?

I have chronic pain issues. Every day is filled with pain and while pain is subjective, I can attest mine isn’t a picnic. If you have ever had a kidney stone, that is what the base pain level I live with on a daily basis. This is how I begin and end my day. Of course, I could get painkillers for it if doctors weren’t so afraid of prescribing them, instead, I do it without help. It’s been close to 15 years that I have been doing this with only the rare and brief help from the medical community. How do I do it? I just live. Mindfulness has taught me I am not my pain, I am me and pain is something separate. It happens to me but it doesn’t define me. Does it drag me down sometimes? Yes. But I just breathe and let the pain be pain and I continue on with my life.

“Breathe and let be.” -Jon Kabat-Zinn.png

Be Who You Are.

I met my wife in 1992 and she hated me. Within a half hour of meeting her, she slapped me and left a red handprint on my face that lasted over an hour. We had too many mutual friends for us to avoid each other but she didn’t like me one bit our entire Junior year in High School. Then summer came and I got to work. I had to work hard all summer to make enough money to survive the next school year because I had moved out on my own. My Grandma was renting me a place which helped but I needed money for school, gas, insurance and a majority of my food. During that summer I learned to quit acting like I thought people expected me to act and just be myself. It was too tiring to keep up an act anyway so it dropped and I was just me and stopped caring as much about what others thought since survival was the more pressing matter. We all returned for our Senior year and I was a different person, a person my wife liked and got along with, the real me. We just celebrated 21 years of marriage and it is a testament to what happens just being yourself.

The Opioid Crisis

Well, it looks like this blog is going to happen because I need a place to talk about what is going on in the world and more specifically in my world. The Opioid Crisis has hit home. I have chronic pain that has been with me for almost a decade now. I manage it fairly well most days, not even OTC meds for the majority of the year. Once a week or so I have to take something for it and every couple of months it gets bad enough to need serious pain control. I also have frequent kidney stones (over 200 before I stopped counting) so opioids and I are on intimate terms. I dislike the feeling coming down from them so I only take them when I absolutely must. This weekend a stone hit that I didn’t get the pain meds on board fast enough so I took a trip to the ER. When I finally was in control of the pain they sent me home with the smallest amount of pills at the weakest strength telling me I was lucky to get those because they didn’t prescribe pain pills anymore. What?!? If you have never had a kidney stone I highly recommend you don’t. I’d rather be stabbed again than have a kidney stone. I haven’t been prescribed pain pills in 9 months but they are going to let me suffer out a weekend because it is now in vogue to let people suffer. I really do get why people are concerned but when someone has a ton of pain you really need to help them. I was terrified this would happen when I kept hearing the news stories and now it’s hit my little world. We really need to figure out a better way of dealing with the opioid crisis than hurting those already in pain.

Mind 2 b


Living with chronic pain and mental health challenges is no fun. I have learned a lot about living with these conditions and my hope is to pass on some of what I learn to others. If I can help one other person, I will consider this blog and podcast a success.

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