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Feeling useless!


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Old 05-10-2013, 02:22 PM   #1
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Feeling useless!

So do you ever really feel useless?
Although I know it's not true and everyone tells me it's my illness not me, some days I just feel like I'm a waste of space!
The educated logical side of me knows that this is not my fault, that life has just dealt me a bad hand and I have to deal with it. The emotional side of me wants to just scream and cry because I can't do the simplest task without being in awful pain.
The really sad thing is unless you're going through this you really cannot understand. I used to be able to do so much, and now have to rely others for help. For someone who was so independent for so long it is very difficult.
I guess it's just a new phase in my life that I have to get used to. The good thing is I have a very caring and supportive wife who has helped me so much, really good doctors who support me, and some family members ho have been wonderful. Being able to post on this board and hear from others who are going thru same thing has meant so much to me.

 
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Old 05-10-2013, 07:12 PM   #2
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Re: Feeling useless!

Yes I sure have that feeling sometimes. It helps to try to put things into perspective. With chronic pain, even basic tasks are accomplishments. Its not fair to compare to when we were pain free. I make myself think about what I still have to be thankful for, what I can still do, things that make me happy, etc...it could always be worse. Best wishes.
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Old 05-11-2013, 02:40 AM   #3
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Re: Feeling useless!

One of the best treatments for my useless feelings (from chronic illness and pain) is focusing on trying to help others. Then I feel I have truly accomplished something worthwhile. I try to help people on these boards, but am doing it horizontally on the couch when I am too tired or hurting too much to do anything else that I should be doing. Like sleeping right now in the middle of the night! I know how hard it is. I am a type A person trapped in a type D body. My mind goes places my body cannot follow. I find keeping busy in some way distracts me from my pain and keeps me from sinking into depression and despair.

 
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Old 05-11-2013, 07:06 AM   #4
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Re: Feeling useless!

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Originally Posted by tortoisegirl View Post
Yes I sure have that feeling sometimes. It helps to try to put things into perspective. With chronic pain, even basic tasks are accomplishments. Its not fair to compare to when we were pain free. I make myself think about what I still have to be thankful for, what I can still do, things that make me happy, etc...it could always be worse. Best wishes.
Thanks and sorry for your pain. I was talking with one of my doctors last week (nothing to do with pain management) and explaining my situation. She was very sorry for what I was going thru, but said it was a good thing the surgery stopped the pressure on the spinal cord, as since it was in the cervical spine, I could have been partially paralyzed from the neck down. It kind of puts things in perspective.
I wish I didn't have this, but I am glad I still have use of my hands and arms and that someone doesn't have to feed me!

 
Old 05-11-2013, 07:12 AM   #5
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Re: Feeling useless!

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Originally Posted by ladybud View Post
One of the best treatments for my useless feelings (from chronic illness and pain) is focusing on trying to help others. Then I feel I have truly accomplished something worthwhile. I try to help people on these boards, but am doing it horizontally on the couch when I am too tired or hurting too much to do anything else that I should be doing. Like sleeping right now in the middle of the night! I know how hard it is. I am a type A person trapped in a type D body. My mind goes places my body cannot follow. I find keeping busy in some way distracts me from my pain and keeps me from sinking into depression and despair.
Thanks landybud, sounds like you have a very positive attitude. I also try to post on the boards and help others with whatever advice I can give.
I also have been getting back into painting, which I did prior to all this. It helps calm me and makes me feel creative, useful, and like I am doing more than keeping the seat warm.
I am also starting back to PT next week and want to get back into walking and swimming. One thing I don't want to happen is to just sit in front of the tv all day and drawn in self pity!
Good luck to you and keep being positive

thanks

 
Old 05-11-2013, 07:43 AM   #6
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Re: Feeling useless!

Dear cspine, Yes, I feel dependent on others & others could be fickle & then where would i be! I feel like i make a functional healthy family dysfunctional because everything we do relies on whether or not i can make it physically such as celebrating Easter,mothers day, vacations etc. Im at the mercy of my drs, my loved ones & the understanding that they have yet again no one can truly understand unless they have this terrible pain so i feel in a very vulnerable situation. I always made sure that i was educated enough that i could provide for & take care of myself if necessary & now i cant work at all. Staying busy, distraction helps me everyday but what makes me feel useful & needed is when i help someone &/or realize that the people that i love & would do anything for & have, would do the same for me. I occupy a place in my family that no one else can fill as a wife & mother & daughter even though i cant "perform" as well as before the love i have & give to the family is very valuable & all people broken or not are vulnerable when they love. I think it is better to measure worth by how much we love & are loved than by what we can "do" as in how much work we can accomplish, that "who does more" competition brings on shame & despair but we havent done anything to be ashamed of, we are in pain but still do the best that we can & thats the most anyone can do!

 
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Old 05-11-2013, 08:14 AM   #7
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Re: Feeling useless!

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Originally Posted by gmak View Post
Dear cspine, Yes, I feel dependent on others & others could be fickle & then where would i be! I feel like i make a functional healthy family dysfunctional because everything we do relies on whether or not i can make it physically such as celebrating Easter,mothers day, vacations etc. Im at the mercy of my drs, my loved ones & the understanding that they have yet again no one can truly understand unless they have this terrible pain so i feel in a very vulnerable situation. I always made sure that i was educated enough that i could provide for & take care of myself if necessary & now i cant work at all. Staying busy, distraction helps me everyday but what makes me feel useful & needed is when i help someone &/or realize that the people that i love & would do anything for & have, would do the same for me. I occupy a place in my family that no one else can fill as a wife & mother & daughter even though i cant "perform" as well as before the love i have & give to the family is very valuable & all people broken or not are vulnerable when they love. I think it is better to measure worth by how much we love & are loved than by what we can "do" as in how much work we can accomplish, that "who does more" competition brings on shame & despair but we havent done anything to be ashamed of, we are in pain but still do the best that we can & thats the most anyone can do!
Hi gmak,
Boy you hit the hammer on the nail (funny the one thing most of us can't do now!!!), I too am at the mercy of my pain and every holiday, birthday, and event are subject to how I feel. Each year we go thru this and have to tell family if I feel up to it we will be there, but if not that that is how it is. So different then a few years ago when we would spend a holiday traveling to both families.
It it tough to be at the mercy of others, but I do have a lot of supportive family members and I am grateful.
You are right that we should measure ourselves on how much we are loved and we love then what physical tasks we can perform. I need to remind myself of that.
Thanks again for your kind words and insight, you are truly an inspiration.

 
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:02 AM   #8
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Re: Feeling useless!

I can totally relate to what you've said and the affect pain is having on your life. I was just telling a good friend on this forum, almost exactly what you described. The frustration with not always being able to do what we want to do or feel we need to do. The reality that the pain levels we are experiencing, can also impact our energy levels which adds another challenge to face. And what makes it more challenging is people's comments - "Well, you look good....." , our pain is invisible and often unbearable. Lately, all I a have been able to do is rest and take my medications as scheduled. Lucky, I do have a very understand husband, who takes over duties when I'm having a pain flare.

First to point out - you are NOT useless, your body just needs time to recover and get strong again. So, rest, rest, rest. Use what other methods, take any medications that help. You will be feeling back to your old self in no time.

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Old 05-12-2013, 11:06 AM   #9
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Re: Feeling useless!

Hi cspime, Just how have the new meds been working for you? Its been a week right?

 
Old 05-12-2013, 12:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmak View Post
Hi cspime, Just how have the new meds been working for you? Its been a week right?
Hi gmak,
yes I have been on the new meds for about a week now and to be honest I am really not impressed with Opana.
I really don't find it much more effective than the MS Contin I was taking at night and per the doctor I did try yesterday using it once during the day and that was not good at all.
So far the only thing that helps me is oxycondon. And we have tried all kinds of meds!
So Wednesday I go back the doctors and I have to talk to them about this and see what we can do not only for the daytime but find something that's going to help out at night.
I really need to get a good nights sleep which is not happening right now and also need to be in more control during the day.
I'll keep you updated as to what they advise this week. Hopefully something will help, as it has been a really tough couple days

Thanks again

 
Old 05-12-2013, 07:25 PM   #11
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Re: Feeling useless!

Just wondering how long ago your neck surgery was-recent?

 
Old 05-13-2013, 02:30 AM   #12
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Re: Feeling useless!

What about oxycontin? If that's the only thing that helps you...

Last edited by nochange; 05-13-2013 at 02:41 AM.

 
Old 05-13-2013, 08:05 AM   #13
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Re: Feeling useless!

Hi cspine, When my dr put me on avinza it is 24 hr dosing & he doesnt like the release system in la morphine except avinza & kadien which has gone generic, something about a capsule with beads vs a tablet is supposed to be more effective in maintaining steady blood levels that last the entire length of time before next dose. For sleep, have you tried amitryptiline or other tricyclic antidepressants just one dose @ bedtime?It took awhile before we found my combination of meds that work for me & i have been on same meds, same dosages for 10 years! But, not perfect, i still have bad days.

 
Old 05-13-2013, 01:09 PM   #14
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Re: Feeling useless!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ladybud View Post
Just wondering how long ago your neck surgery was-recent?
I had my surgery in December of 2011. Been in pain ever since

 
Old 05-13-2013, 01:15 PM   #15
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Re: Feeling useless!

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Originally Posted by nochange View Post
What about oxycontin? If that's the only thing that helps you...
Hi Nochange,
It's funny oxycondon helps during the day, but when we tried oxycontin at night it didn't help much, which is why they have been trying other long acting meds at night. So far the MS Contin has worked the best. Nothing seems to give me a full nights relief and almost every night I wake up in pain, some nights worse than others. Still hoping they find something that works!

 
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