Tag Archives: God

Is There a Reason for Chronic Pain?

When I initially read this blog post, I didn’t consider “reblogging” it. However, I found myself reading it again. The more I thought I about it, the more I realized how much the chronic pain community needs to hear this. In Scott Williams’ blog post, he talks about the phrase “Everything happens for a reason,” and how nonsensical and unhelpful it is. For the chronic pain community, in my opinion, this phrase is absolutely ridiculous. Doctors, even after a couple thousand years of studying the human body, still don’t understand what exactly happens in the nervous system when a person experiences chronic pain. They can’t tell you what causes chronic pain or where in the nervous system is the problem. They can’t even give you an exact time line on how long rehabilitation will take. Then we start questioning ourselves. Right? Why me? Why now? All you end up with is mascara running down your face and your hair in a matted mess. Or, you jump on that depreciating Merry-Go-Round ride of the “Could’ve-Should’ve-Would’ve,” and at the end, the only thing you can do is to keep yourself from puking. So, do we just give up on life? Throw in the towel. Should we put on our favorite sweats & t-shirt, grab some Cool Ranch Doritos, and morph into a couch potato? I hope you already know the answer to this, but I will say it anyways: NO! I will repeat myself: NO! So, what are we to do? In order to answer that question, here’s a little snippet of my personal history with chronic pain. A couple years back, I was very, very ill with chronic pain and also quite depressed. I was angry and bitter with God, myself, my parents, life, everything, and anything. It was at that point I realized that I could either wallow in pain and misery and end up making things worse, or I could grit my teeth and come to terms with my situation. I humbly realized that no good would come out of continuing to deny reality or defining chronic pain as something other than what it really was. Mind you this was not a flippant, easy, 1-2-3 process for me but was a several month process. However, that period was quite healing for me, more emotionally and spiritually than physically. As many of us already know, life with chronic pain is an endless roller coaster with highs and lows, twists and turns. I have more “blue” days than I care to admit, but I choose to put a smile on my face everyday and keep a positive, hopeful attitude. Hope, joy, and peace have replaced the anger and bitterness. I still have unanswered questions, even more than I started with a couple years ago. I know in this life I will not have all the answers, and I’m learning to accept that. So, I encourage you to read the following blog post. Then, take an honest look at your circumstances, accept reality, and continue with life!

English: Nyamata Memorial Site, skulls. Nyamat...

It’s called a cognitive distortion. We all have heard it, probably most of us believe it. We aren’t sure where it came from. It’s in the bible somewhere or the Dali Lama said it. Everything does happen for a reason.

Tell that to the six million jews who died in World War Two. Or the twenty-five million Russians who perished fighting the Nazis. Tell that to the children born in Mogadishu, or in starvation conditions in Africa. Tell that to the Tutsi’s hacked to death in Rwanda, or the genocide victims in The Congo.

“Everything happens for a reason” is a western, affluent, construct. It is a convenient and heartening way to explain away pain and suffering but it is, unfortunately, not based on any legitimate philosophy and it hurts people. It reminds me of my friend who was told, after his child died, that “God must have wanted another…

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