Take off your blinders. Please lend an ear. I have tried the utmost to help others perceive what we go through in chronic pain from conditions as FMS, MPS, CFS, hypothyroidism and others as osteoporosis and musculoskeletal problems. Few answers are received from our questions. We only ask for some quality of life, dignity, and self-worth to live again. Much research has been conducted and we only ask you to return the favour in order to assist us. Our pain is not in vein, it is real. It has been taking our lives away and manyhave tried everything not to take the route of suicide.

This cannot continue. Give us our strength back. Understand what we are going through and offer assistance in which our lives may be allowed more production. We have become pioneers for those who follow. The next generation depends on us. We lost our lives, dignity and need understanding, compassion, empathy and consideration from many of the professionals in the community. A battle is continually being fought in the conditions we are currently experiencing and we want all to understand our situation. You have seen us try to walk, stand but cannot. You see us in daily pain and cannot rectify the problem for us. We want to go on and only you can provide the answers.

The problems I am now experiencing and I am speaking for me, is my wish to help others in similar situations/conditions; to reach out to share support, inspiration and reassurance. You see this is rather difficult when I cannot obtain the proper help for myself. The fatigue and pain can be especially overwhelming. Incompetence is something I cannot deal with. Lack of knowledge, lack of understanding, lack of research, lack of people listening, lack of impatience and inhumanity is intolerable. When are they going to listen? There are hundreds of articles and documents on these topics. What is essential here is early evaluation. Living in a world of pain is demeaning, quite demeaning to beg for help somewhat. Some physicians feel very different about chronic pain than others.

Understanding these conditions is quite difficult and what they can do to one's being until they experience this state of affairs themselves. Only physicians, as ourselves who live in chronic pain and/or take an interest understand and want to help the patients. This is also true for those who at least take the time to learn more about chronic pain and the way it affects oneís daily living.

Many of us have been drawn together to detect each otherís grief, and to deal with the pain. Attractions to similar people experiencing this dilemma is very common in order to pull ourselves together as best as possible. It is as anything else. If someone has an interest in a sport, they find others interested in the same sport. Unfortunately, these are illnesses. We reach out and find support from others who are afflicted with the same conditions. The degree of pain is documented and confirmed to be extremely close in nature to RA, MS, muscular dystrophy, RSD, spinal stenosis, Ö. the list never ends.

There is no cure at this time because x-rays at present cannot detect soft tissue damage as it is mainly muscle related and once complicated with Myofascial problems only adds to the pain. Many doctors prescribe anti-inflammatories, but I must state that in these conditions, nothing is inflamed; it only feels that way. For myself this obviously has become my fate and will have to live with it unless there is a miracle cure down the road. At least I do believe and can testify for many, that most if not all would appreciate to live life in less pain.

Unfortunately, the cards have been dealt this way and we only ask for some help and reassurance from our physicians and health care providers. Many tests are being conducted, yes, on many other illnesses that are also important; statistics now show there are at least 6 plus million cases in North America alone. It has become an epidemic. Why is there not more research conducted? These numbers are higher than any other ailment recognized or documented. If researchers do not find some answers soon, there will be too many deaths occurring, too many people ending their lives because there is no treatment, no quality of life and find very few care to listen or reach out to offer a helping hand or some understanding. I do not want to become as an old song states, " just a little lamb lost in the woods". We want to be found and treated with respect and under- standing. We need very essential and manageable treatment. It becomes permanent and yes somewhat, life threatening without proper and early evaluation and care. The pain becomes debilitating and crippling, almost a total lost of self-worth and self-esteem.

Reaching some harmony with all parties concerned is of the utmost importance in our treatment. Let the research continue and produce some progress and results. We are being compared to granules of sand thrown among blades of grass as you know once those granules are thrown into the tall grass, they can no longer be seen. We want to be seen; we need to be seen; we do not want to be invisible; we are not invisible.

Allow us to stand tall once again as those blades of grass and to be reassured that we will remain that way and not invisible like dissolving sand...tossed away and forgotten. Too many lives are involved and too many lives will be wasted. Please, for our sake, do not let our lives just exist. There is quality there. We want to stand up and be counted as well, live in harmony and want HELP and treatment and above all reassurance. Many have supplied quality research on these subjects. Without early evaluation, it is too difficult to treat. Answers need immediate attention NOW! We have become too weak to continue our own research as mentioned above. It is up to the professionals to find the proper treatments. How can we be expected to continue in a battle we are losing. We need someone to fight for us for a change and band together. Some people cannot handle it, some cannot linger on, and some try to continue to help others and have become advocates. They are willing and are producing their finest work to deliver a message before it is too late. Many, who range in the thousands are losing their lives. We want some quality of life back. Those granules of sand will soon melt down. We do not want to become witness to this degree of despair.

There is still life in our system and not death and despair. Quality of treatment is important or we will all lose the battle. Will you not continue our fight; will you not support it and do something positive? It is up to you now. We have done our part. Manual labour is difficult enough as we cannot be pushed to the limit much longer. Give us our lives back as we are only fighting to survive. Medications are only a stepping stone in finding a cure, but if we are not allowed certain medications we cannot function. Some physicians have never dealt with these situations before. Take a class, attend a seminar, read your literature and stay tuned with the times and listen to your patients' plea for HELP.

(c) Maureen B. Black

(c) Maureen B. Black
  1998, 1999, 2000, 2001