It's been two months since I wrote about my ongoing struggle with chronic daily pain so I thought I should give a quick progress update. In short, I’m in less pain in my head and neck. I’m still in the Long Middle Part but I’m extremely grateful for the progress.
The outpouring of support from everyone who commented or checked in mid-August had me feeling like a lucky man. In fact, I felt so good that I spent a few hours resurrecting an old friend, Brizzly.com. The current version of Brizzly is perfect for taking a break from social media, try it yourself if you haven’t already and tell a friend. Techcrunch and Slate (and Slate France) wrote about it and now Brizzly has a contingent of frequent users in France. C’est la vie, Brizzly!
The last week of August, I had a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment. This PRP knocked the pain in my neck & head down a click or two. It’s still a hassle since it spikes my inflammatory response. I get tired and sore and you can’t take any anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen or Aleve for a few weeks before and after to give the PRP the best chance of healing. The idea is to stimulate your body to use its own natural inflammatory response. It’s annoying, it’s working and I’m having another one this morning.
Allison (we celebrated our 20th anniversary in August) has been the best throughout all of this and I'm covered on the day-to-day for support. I’m making progress in physical therapy and trying to stay in tune with what my body is telling me. If I need to rest, I take a rest or cancel plans — and then I don’t look back. I’ve spent a lot of my time in pain frustrated with missing out on life so I’m trying to go a bit easier on myself and accept the reality in front of me. I still get frustrated and crabby when pain demands my attention but I’m trying to learn, grow and breathe.
Speaking of inhaling… I got your note Internet. You want me to try CBD oil or some other form of marijuana. Since those things are in a class of drugs that are anti-inflammatories I’ll take a rain check for now but thanks for the suggestion.
I’m using a computer with more ease, so I’m trying to spend a couple days a week in Oakland at a friend’s office. When I’m there I’m spending my time meeting with old friends, reading and trying to tune into the right mission for the next phase of life looks like for me. I’ll let you know how that goes.
After my last post, a lot more friends suffering silently reached out to say you were in chronic pain too and looking forward to brighter days yourself. It felt so good to hear I’m not alone. If you are in pain, tell someone! Hiding pain seems to make it worse. Pain is already bad enough, let’s not make it worse.
I’m looking forward to the PRP today and looking forward to the possibilities of less pain soon. Wish me luck!