CRPS Awareness Day 23: Why We Are Thankful Despite CRPS
Compiled by Samantha Anderson for the RSDSA blog.
Thanksgiving can be a particularly difficult time for people living with CRPS. The holidays in general are stressful. Whether you are hosting dinner at your house or have to travel to a relative’s house, it can be stressful. However, Thanksgiving is a wonderful part of the year, as we get to reflect on why we are thankful. Sometimes, it can be difficult to be thankful when you are living with the pain associated with CRPS. But, there is always at least one reason.
We asked members of our wonderful RSDSA community to let us know what they are thankful for this year. We received an overwhelming amount of responses. After reviewing everyone’s amazing submissions, we wanted to feature some of them in the blog. We hope that blogs like this one remind you to reflect back on the positive elements of your life. There is good in everything, sometimes you just have to search. I understand this first hand, as I am a member of the CRPS community. What am I thankful for this year? I am thankful for having such a strong, powerful community that supports one another and that is so determined to make a difference. I am thankful for the amazing support system I have, from my husband, to my mom, and the family I got to choose. I am thankful for the healing power of animals. I am thankful for each and every one of you! Here are some of the things your fellow community members are thankful for. Enjoy!
“I am thankful for the people who have adjusted to the CRPS with me” -Heather P.
“I’m thankful for my eternal salvation and for God who gives me just enough strength to face each day and for all who walk with me.” -Joy K.
“I am thankful for CRPS making me the strongest I have ever had to be and learning that I can still smile through all of this pain.” -Brenda B.
“[I am thankful for] a roof over my head, food in the cupboard, and my little dog who never leaves my side.” -Rochelle O.
“[I am thankful] for RSD friends that I would have never met but for this monster!!! So many Warrior [sic] and so much caring and love!!” -Earl D.
“I’m actually thankful for the pain. As weird as that sounds, it has changed my life. It has forced me to slow down and enjoy the smallest things that most people take for granted. It has allowed me to learn about self love and to actually live life rather than just existing.” -Kristin M.
“I’m thankful for my support system. My mom and my aunt are experts at waiting room etiquette. I’m thankful for my doctor and his nurses. I’d be lost without them!” -Maria T.
“[I am thankful for] My pain doctor, who first diagnosed me 29 years ago next month, and whose knowledge and tenacity allowed me to talk again. He has passed away and I never got to thank him enough but he was ma saviour [sic]. RIP, Dr. S.” -Sharon V.
“The lessons that come with CRPS: patience, perseverance, balance, and celebrating the small wins. It reshaped my world by now I value so much the time I have with family, friends, fur babies. I celebrate the days I work and the walks I take” -@moonglotexas
“I’m thankful for the very breath I breathe because I have had breathing problems before. I am thankful for my smile because I almost lost it when I was 10. I’m thankful for the pain I feel because it means that I am not paralyzed. I’m thankful for every single day that I can wake up because God has allowed me to stay on this Earth with my family for another day. I’m thankful for the life I have because I almost lost it when I was 10. I could have died from the cancer that I had at 10 so I’m thankful that I have CRPS because it’s not cancer. I’m thankful for everything I have because I’ve had less.” – Windy F.
“I am thankful for my son, I have been living with this for probably most of my entire life, I have been in very dark places, & just having him & loving him & knowing truly what unconditional love is fills my heart everyday [sic], without him I don’t know if I could fight this disease much longer, but he pushes me out of my safe places & into new adventures and levels of strength I didn’t know I had! His imagination & curiosity help me see the world in so many amazing ways, he has no clue but he has given me a piece of life I never thought I would have, 6yr old little hero, & I couldn’t be more proud of him every day! The empathy he shows others warms my soul.”- Ashley M.
“[I am thankful for] my family, Netflix, painting, and writing all help distract my pain. I am also thankful for my friends who have stuck by me and for my youth group and youth pastor and his wife.” -Makenna R.
“I am thankful for my family’s unconditional love and support everyday [sic] and in every aspect of this disease..[sic] I have six kids four grandkids and my husband..they help me in every way..even allow me to just have my meltdowns but there to pick me up after.. I truly believe that if not for them I’d be dead by now! They are my rock through this fight.”- Jeananne B.
“I’m thankful for the things that I can do instead of dwelling on what I cannot do! I’m thankful for God giving me the power to be tenacious and to not give up despite the pain nor give in to the pain. I’m also thankfuol [sic] for the power of positivity and for being able to make “Hope” a verb and to do something about it as much as possible. I’m also thankful for my soul mate, my husband Craig; who’s also my caregiver much of the time. Lastly, but definitely not least, I’m thankful for the few non profit org who have been with me and for me from the start.”-@raseforcrps
We had so many incredible responses. It was one of our most impressive comment threads. We want to know why you are thankful. We challenge you to make a video, a post, a tweet, anything to explain why you are thankful. Tag us so we can see. Happy Thanksgiving!
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Ms. Anderson good afternoon and Happy Thanksgiving. Please don’t interrupt your day. My name is Dennis Ripley, I’m 64 and have had CRPS for 3 yrs. Your articles are amazing and sound every bit like I’m telling my story. I have been through so much in these 3 yrs. it seems like forever. Being new to RSDSA, as in yesterday I not sure how to proceed. But I’ll continue. 3 yrs. ago I ruptured all the tendons in my right ankle and had to have surgery to repair them, never healed completely. A cadaver tendon was implanted, fast forward 3 more surgeries cadaver tendon was removed. On the second surgery I began to have this pain that was nothing like anything I’d ever experienced . Just a note, I’ve had 5 back surgeries and a plus one for a nuero-simulator, 1 neck surgery, those all have plate, screws and rods, had a hip replacement and a few others that I’ll call minor. I am not new to pain! when I had the second surgery on my ankle I started to have this pain that was hard to describe, my Dr. started to do picking and using this small knife cutting on the wound and the dead skin that was forming. I could tell he was getting frustrated and short with my questions. on my second to last visit to him he told me that he may have caught a nerve in a stitch, that was the first time that I ever heard the acronym CRPS.
during me last visit with him I asked why he hadn’t referred my to someone that could help me more, he said something to me that i thought a Dr. would never say, he told me I was a terrible patient and asked to many questions. No pun intended but it has been a pain in my back end since! my ankle, right where it bends has never healed, 4 surgeries and it looks like hamburger, CRPS symptoms are out of this world. I haven’t mentioned the fact that I’ve been on antibiotics just about the entire 3 yrs. just finished a six week infusion antibiotics, everyday. My short inquiry was my first time to this site and your stories just caught me and couldn’t stop reading. I contacted a J. Brock and she told me about a lady who’s name is Samantha how she had her leg amputated below the knee because of her CRPS. I’m new to this and not sure how to navigate this site, and I’m afraid I’ve rambled. My mind is spinning since I located this site. Thank you Dennis Ripley
Thanks for sharing, Dennis. Let us know how we can help you!