What began as a way to spend time with my family evolved into a singular exploration. It became a chance to spend a few hours outdoors amid the pines and crags ornamented by the chatter of ground squirrels. This solitary journey is the perfect way for me to let go of the overwhelm that comes with being an entrepreneur who lives with chronic illness and pain. It’s the perfect reminder of the many blessings in my life. It is a time to slow down, to engage in quiet reflection, and to reawaken my spirit as one year comes to an end and another one lies before me.
Author: Evelyn Donato
Suicide and Chronic Illness: Risks, Interventions and Hope
Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. It's also Pain Awareness Month. While suicide is a difficult topic to address, it’s vital that we do so. As suicide rates are elevated in people with chronic illness and chronic pain, it’s important to be aware of the ways that chronic illness and chronic pain can increase vulnerability to suicidality.
Raising Lazarus: Another Take on the Opioid Crisis
Macy’s new book “Raising Lazarus” focuses on many of the same themes she covered in her book “Dopesick”, but with an important new addition. She recognizes that opioid hysteria and fear of addiction went too far, depriving many people in pain of the medications they need to lead functional and productive lives.
“Just” Another Gastroparesis Flare
I gripped the kitchen counter, my arms straight as a board trying to brace myself against the extreme pain that had begun shortly after eating last night’s small, plain meal. My stomach was as hard as a rock and bloated like I was four months pregnant. It felt like it was being tightly twisted and rung out like an old dish towel.
Where I’m From
I am from old stories that stick to me like surgeon’s glue, that hold me fast to places, people, things that are no longer mine.
I’m Living Proof That Effective Pain Management Can Heal
People with Intractable Pain Syndrome (IPS) experience major health problems throughout their lives because of the physical and psychological toll that pain takes on the brain and body. Treatment for this complex and disabling condition must be taken seriously and done correctly.
The Gift of a Wound That Never Heals
I discovered that if I’m strong enough to be weak enough, I’m given a wound that never heals. It’s this gift that keeps my heart open. I discovered that joy – real joy that doesn’t deny what’s difficult in our lives – is a choice. Joy finds us when we’re willing to acknowledge that we belong – to ourselves; to another; to the world; to the mystery that is so much larger than ourselves.
Finding the Light in Darkness
Each one of us has challenges we must learn to cope with throughout our lives. But no matter what we have to face, having each other to turn to for support, sharing, and love in our moments of defeat and success is vital to our capacity to cope with these challenges. Trying to take on life alone — along with not searching for peace and purpose despite the challenges - can become too overwhelming and for some, a reason to lose hope.
I’m Still Standing
December 1, 2011. A day of beginnings and endings. 10 years ago today I underwent a 10-1/2 hour surgery that gave me my life back. I was reborn at the age of 52 with the promise of less pain, fewer hospitalizations, the ability to eat again, the ability to live again.
11 Ways Caregivers Can Keep Stress And Burnout At Bay
Caring for a loved one can be a full-time job, often on top of another full-time job and competing family obligations. According to CDC data, one in five U.S. adults provide informal care for loved ones, with one in six non-caregivers expecting to start caring for a loved one within the next two years . While the work of a caregiver can be draining, it can also be rewarding and provide a sense of fulfillment.