People who suffer from chronic pain sometimes forget they suffer from chronic pain.
Let me rephrase that...people who suffer from chronic pain work hard to forget that they do, and sometimes achieve that result long enough to be unpleasantly surprised when it inevitably rears its ugly head.
Because if your choices are "mope and suffer" or "try to be as normal as possible," you try.
You always try.
And, depending on the nature of your situation, you can sort of get there. Everything seems normal.
Then one day you find yourself laid out on the sofa with the pillows stacked just so, watching Paul McCartney sound check videos on YouTube with only your right eye open because you think it is entirely possible your left eye might POP OUT due to the fact that it, and the rest of your face feel like they've been whacked with a shovel.
I might be slightly obsessed with that Shovel To The Face thing...
Also...hi! Have you seen that cool sound check video? Get it before the lawyers swoop in!
I...am never sure how to go about discussing the fact that I have basically had a headache every day for the last 11 years, or that my ears are always ringing a little, or I always feel a bit of pressure behind my eyes. I prefer to avoid the subject entirely. The problem is, when you never talk about it, even your best friends forget that it's a thing. Then, when you're not acting like "yourself" they ask what's wrong and you say something like, "It's the same shit that's been wrong for 11 years."
Then everyone feels bad.
Ultimately I suppose that's why we avoid the topic--in addition to wanting to pretend it's not really happening: It's that you're trying to make other people feel better about the fact that you feel like shit by pretending you don't feel like shit.
That's not as martyr-y as it sounds. Maybe you got sick of them asking about it when it first started happening, or maybe they were just never all that interested to begin with.
So you pretend, until you can't.
I'm so used to pretending I'm fine that even when the pain comes back kicking, I maintain my normal activity level long past the point that I should. It gets to the level of, "Hey dipshit, it doesn't matter what pair of glasses you put on. Your eyes are blurry BECAUSE YOUR HEAD IS FUCKED UP."
Anyway...that's my day, today. Sofa-bound. I'm telling the blog instead of telling my fiends because I'm pretty sure nobody here will ask me to explain it or tell me I should "just go to the doctor," as if that thought had never occurred to me in the eleven years I have had a headache. (The only person I want to talk it over with LESS than a friend would be yet another effing doctor...) Secretly I want my friends to bring me ice cream and keep me company but I suppose "mope and suffer" is meant to be done alone.