Pain sucks! I have a back that needs constant attention and vigilance. One of the symptoms of HIV is chronic inflamation, which affects the body in mysterious ways. . Rather than suck down a bunch of opiates, I have found some ways to cope.
The first thing I do is remind myself it’s temporary! Chronic and permanent are not the same . It’s easy to devolve into a pity party, and trust me, I have fallen into despair at times. But I know the next day, my attitude will be more positive as the pain lessens. It always does! For me, it’s lower back pain and sciatica, and if you have experienced that ,it’s no joke. I know without my yoga practice it would be much, much worse. I have my series of exercises from the physical therapist, plus a few things I figured out on my own. I lay face down on my bed and hook my elbows over one side, and my feet on the other. I gently pull both directions for a slight traction. That helps pull the discs back into position, which gives me some relief. Then I do some low cobra right there on the bed. I also alternate between ice and heat. A nice warm bath always feels great. I also do both acupuncture and shiatsu massage, which I highly recommend.
A stroll around the neighorhood always helps loosen things up.At the moment, I am walking with a foot brace and a cane (I railed against both for a long time, now I am just grateful I have them), but come snowshoe season, I can actually walk farther than in my daily life! I am really looking forward to that!
To all of you living in pain, know you are not alone. There are many books and support groups out there to help .At this moment, I am reading a wonderful book :”The book of Awakening” by Mark Nepo.It’s helping me get out of my head and into my heart and the present moment.