I have dealt with chronic pain for a myriad of reasons, but for today I want to focus on how chronic pain can strain relationships, but can also lead you to fun times that can bring you closer together. When the stars are aligned just right you can find those special moments.
Another thing that friends and family know about me is that I have always loved a long, hot bath. When I was single I rented a two bedroom apartment for the bathtub alone. But when you have a preschooler and a toddler it isn’t always convenient. You either grin and bear the pain which makes you Mommy on the verge. Or you take the bath and put Netflix on full tilt so you don’t hear your husband having to do it all and literally simmer in guilt.
Recently, my husband took our preschooler to run errands while the toddler napped. I immediately headed for our 1960’s bathroom that I have turned into my tiny spa to relieve my back and nerve pain. 30 minutes later The Queen woke up. When she wakes up she yells from her bed “Mooommy, where arrreee yooou!” in her funny little toddler accent. I fire back, “I’m in the bathroom… come heerrre!”. This goes for a couple rounds until she finally caves and comes to see me. Most likely she assumes I have milk, snacks or a packet. She walks in and does a quick survey of the room. Candle, bubble bath, smell good, kindle/movie, snacks…yup, she decided she was in. With not a bit of hesitation she jumps in and we watch “Sleeping Beauty” or something. We also had a tea party and talked about the nativity scene nativity ducks I bought for the holidays. We had soooo much fun, mostly because I was able to do all that with little to no pain.
You see, I had lost some of my bond with her after my recent surgery that had me in the hospital for 7days and in bed for weeks. And now we were laughing, playing…all the things I couldn’t do recently.
The next weekend we are doing the typical things working parents need to do…balance the checkbook, clean, laundry, etc. when my toddler grabs me and says “Mommy, movie, bath?”
We watched Mulan, had a tea party, and made bubbles. It is one of the few times we spend girl time together and pain free time together. It’s like my son and I’s movie and popcorn time.
Those who deal with #chronicpain understand that finding common ground with your family when you feel like they are constantly making concessions is gold! It can be the tiniest things like movies in bed or chatting in the mini van when they are sitting third row and I can lay flat with my heating pad. They think it’s hilarious that my head is so close to them. It also made it convenient to hold my son’s hand when he got upset the first time he watched Benji on a road trip.
I grew up with a critically ill father, and I’m not going to lie, it was stressful. But there were a lot of things he and I got to do that my friends were jealous of. During my senior year of high school I would go home to a yummy lunch, made by my Dad, and we would watch Days of Our Lives and laugh about Marlana being possessed. He even served green grapes one time to represent her eyes during her supposed possesed times.
I hope that my kids will look back and see the good times in lieu of the bad. I loved my father’s creativity to help where he could and I hope I can do the same for my family . Just like #chronicpain theatre.