I would first like to start this off by introducing myself and giving you an understanding of my life and how it has drastically changed in the last two years.
My name is Joel and I live in sunny Queensland Australia and I have been suffering from chronic pain for the last two to three years.
I enlisted in the Australian Army in 2011 as a Technician of Electronics Systems and during an exercise, I fell down a dry creek bed hyperextending my spine and knocking myself out in the process. Being the typical Army tough guy that we are portrayed to be, I soldiered on not worrying about my injuries too much, as to show pain is showing weakness, which is what I thought back then.
Fast forward a few years after the incident and regular doctor visits became something of a constant routine. I firstly had a lot of pain and instability in my ankle and I could not hide the injury anymore, as it was beginning affect my fitness and attitude. After multiple scans and reports, the Orthopedic Surgeon decided that the only rectification is to have a complete ankle reconstruction. This was the beginning of the end of my Army career.
After the recovery time, I was back at work and feeling like a part of the team again. I felt that the ankle reconstruction worked so well that I had confidence that I could get rid of the constant back pain that was beginning to limit my physical ability. I had multiple scans which showed up degeneration of a few disks and damage to the nerves in my back, which was why I was in so much pain all the time. After many specialist appointments and minor surgeries, the pain has got worse and now it is beginning to change everything in my life.
So this is where I will stop for this first blog as I feel like you as the reader now have a small understanding of who I am.
What you can expect from my blogs:
- A true story of how pain has affected my life
- What aspects of my life it has changed
- How my mental and physical health has suffered
- How my pain affects my family and friends
- How I am dealing with everything
- How I limit the pain and try to enjoy life
- Information and resources for pain management, that I find actually work
- The pro’s and con’s of my experiences with various medication
- What life is like once you have lost your dream career
- what up’s and down’s you can expect
- Advice from my personal experiences
- Advice from my friends and family on how to support someone suffering
- Information on support networks
I really hope that my blogs can reach as many people as possible. I hope that people can relate to this blog and hopefully understand that they are not alone and that getting support and teaching people around you about mental health and chronic pain is so very important.
It might just save someone’s life.