Nov 23, 2013

A Fever You Can't Sweat Out

Leather and Wool Loose Collar Navy Blue Jacket: Jhajing Fashion at the SuperSale Bazaar  | Semi Sheer Chiffon Crepe Button Down Blouse: Mango | Neon Skinny Jeans: Zara | Chartreuse Snakeskin with Metal Ankle Strap Shoes: ASOS | Neon Jewelled Rhinestone Chartreuse Necklace: Ever New | Two Twoned Studded Bag: Shiq Bags | Accessories: Therapy and Rolex

The I.V. and your hospital bed
This was no accident
This was a therapeutic chain of events

This is the scent of dead skin on a linoleum floor
This is the scent of quarantine wings in a hospital
It's not so pleasant
And it's not so conventional
It sure as hell ain't normal
But we deal, we deal

The anesthetic never set in and I'm wondering where
The apathy and urgency is that I thought I phoned in
It's not so pleasant.
And it's not so conventional
It sure as hell ain't normal
But we deal, we deal

Just sit back, just sit back
Just sit back and relax
Just sit back, just sit back
Just sit back and relapse again
 You're a regular decorated emergency
You're a regular decorated emergency

 - Camisado, Panic! At The Disco

The song is of course so very appropriate since as you know I have been staying at the hospital (not as a patient this time) but as a visitor as my boyfriend is sick and confined. Partly this is also the reason I get to blog a lot since I have a lot of down time especially at night. I think the amount of kindness, empathy, care and compassion I have received the many times I was confined has predisposed me to treat people as I was treated and ultimately, I think that was a great lesson that I got from many mostly unpleasant experiences. As you know, I always tend to overcompensate in dressing up when I am going though something and I figured perhaps wearing my favorite color (chartreuse) would do the trick, which I admit, got the job done, however minimally. 

Since we are on the subject of health and hospitals, I have come to realize that most of us forget to ask ourselves how we are doing, because of the hustle and bustle of everyday. Obviously, I am not one of those people. Before the post traumatic stress disorder which has caused me to develop hypochondria (I am afraid of getting sick), I used to think that despite the symptoms- if I can walk and talk, that's good enough for me. Clearly, that didn't work out well and even more, it has caused more problems than benefits to myself. The thing I am always so sensitive about is PAIN. I require pain management specialists whenever confined because my threshold has been quite challenged especially after my surgeries. I am afraid of pain (but then again who isn't?), yet at the same time cannot do anything about it as I am allergic to ALL painkillers of the NSAIDS variety except for Paracetamol, and so, I cannot begin to explain to you having to go through severe pain with only Paracetamol (unless I have myself admitted and they administer something stronger). It's all so very sad and traumatic really... but you get used to is... until it really hurts. 
Disclaimer: Again I am talking about physical pain here. To clarify, NO, Paracetamol won't help you in any emotional pain you might be going through. It helps to be specific, you see. 

A popular advertisement for Tylenol goes, "I don't have time for pain." To be quite honest, I find that statement ridiculous, unnecessary and absurd. Thanks Tylenol for stating the obvious because really: Nobody has time for pain. I find it weird that we have advertisements for medications, really, because I find that it capitalizeds on people's illnesses which is like an insult, especially if you are suffering. Now while I do not know anything about how the pharmaceutical industry operates, I cannot be all judgmental and say random things without getting the entire picture. (I learned by example very very recently, you see)... So I guess it would be useful if someone could explain this to me. The thing is, in this day and age where how much you sell matters more than what you are selling, we live in a generation where when asked, "Got pain?" The usual answer is, "No big deal, take a pill for that." No time to be sick? "Does not matter, we have something to keep you going, prevent it from happening or numbing you to the false sense of reality that you are fine." ...and can I just point out, we are so engrossed of these ideas, we actually buy it by the billions. People who do too much just do not have time for pain.

Pain slows us down. The presence of pain lets us know something is wrong. Pain interferes with our daily lives, If we cannot ignore it, the solution is easy: we can medicate it. No problem... and then we can carry on as usual. But that does not end there. Because while pain is a gauge that something is wrong with ourselves physically, the absence of pain (because of the wide array of pain killers which I refer to as pain concealers, because really, that's all they do...conceal the pain until the next dose...) does not mean we are doing well. The absence of pain is not in any way a gauge or indication that we are well. Having to take a look at the trends in the food we eat, our destructive "little pleasures", our pushing ourselves too hard would be much too time consuming and interfere with the things we have  to get done. There is one thing we can depend upon. When we create a problem with ourselves, a drug company will develop something to take care of the symptoms. I am NOT against that. I take so many medications every four hours, I don't even remember how it feels to function and be as a human being unmedicated. I am all for medications. 

We could, however, take another approach: when we feel the onset of pain, perhaps we could stop to ask what our bodies are trying to tell us and how we can respond to the pain in a way that won't just conceal the symptoms, but a way that will actually be healing. When your body gives you warning signals, there are many avenues of responses available...hopefully, we choose the right one.

xx, JL

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