Thursday, November 22, 2007

Have to Walk the Rocks to See the Mountain View

Many of you that read this have heard updates by now I think. I thought I would have time during the clinic to write about what was going on, but they kept us really busy.

The clinic was amazing. It is by far the best thing that's ever happened to me as far as my chronic pain goes. Every day we saw a physical therapist for about 30 minutes, and the rest of the time was spent in relaxation sessions and learning how to treat our own pain. Amazing how well it works, too. By the second day of the clinic, my muscle spasms that have been my constant torment (with numerous attempts in the past 4 years to stop them with all types of medications) stopped completely for 2 hours. They came back mildly after that; but since that day, I have learned how rid of them by simply allowing them to be there. It's a paradox, but I'm telling you as a previous skeptic, it works!

Since the clinic, the plan is to do the protocol that they teach you at home as much as possible, in hopes that in a year or two, the pain and symptoms will gradually subside altogether. It's not an easy way, but I've given drugs a chance for over a year only to feel worse. Giving this protocol a chance for at least one year has been a blessing so far, in that I've already experienced results with no side effects.

The protocol consists of:
-Skin rolling
-Trigger point therapy
-Relaxation sessions

At the clinic, I was probably in the worst shape of anyone there. They were calling me the "Trigger Point Queen" because there weren't too many places on my body that could be touched by the physical therapist without it causing all kinds of pain. One of the main reasons that they believed this to be true was because of the amount of medicines that I was on. I try not to regret taking all of these medications in the past, because at the time we felt like there was no other option. In that kind of pain you are desperate for any kind of relief, despite the nasty side effects that come along with heavy medications.

Anyway, I have been encouraged by the people at the clinic to decrease my drug usage, which is mainly what I am doing now along with the protocol. Since August, I have quit many medicines (including Ritalin, Valium and steroids), and I have to say it feels like one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. No matter how careful I am, withdrawal symptoms (sweats, chills, aching, feeling agitated, miserable, nauseous, and like I don't belong in my own skin) seem to plague me from the gradual decrease of Oxycodone, the painkiller I have been on. This one drug has been estimated to take a year for the body to be completely free from dependence.

So this is the new chapter in my life. As difficult as it is, I feel so blessed and full of joy because of a hope for better things to come, along with the experiences I've already had of reduced pain and symptoms.

Those readers who know me, please keep me in your prayers as you have been doing. I appreciate this probably more than anything else.

And those of you who randomly came upon this site, possibly looking for hope that you are not alone in your pain, I beg you to contact me and ask me more details about the clinic and book, "A Headache in the Pelvis". I could talk for hours on end about how Dr. David Wise and his team are more than worth the trip to California. You won't be sorry you gave it a shot, and the six days of the clinic will most likely be incomparable to the months you have invested in surgeries, medications, and other heroic efforts to reduce your symptoms.

One last note:
A few months ago, I was contacted by a wonderful woman who runs a site that is definitely worth your time if you are a woman struggling with chronic pelvic pain, interstitial cystitis, or many of the other conditions similar in nature. Please check out her website for great articles and a whole network of support:


At 10:56 AM, Blogger Stacy said...

I'm so happy for you, Lis! I know there's still a long road ahead of you but there's hope and that is everything! Let us know when you feel up to getting together again -- it was soooo good to see you and be able to give you a big hug!


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