love – Patience – Tolerance

Awake In the face of suffering

3 years ago I had a car accident that changed my life forever. It was a simple whiplash injury that triggered Central Pain Syndrome. A chronic nerve pain condition that affects my head, face, lower spine and back.

I experience phantom pain with a dysfunctional central nervous system passing on faulty information to my brain. Which over reacts with burning, stabbing pain in my lower back and electric shock pains in my head. It’s a life long condition with no cure and the only real relief comes from anti-convulsant medications and muscles relaxants.

It affects everything from my work life to my marriage. I can now only work part time at a desk job. I had to give up my trade as a welder as it was too physical. And with cognitive and memory problems as a side effect of the pain I was making mistakes on the job.

My wife has also had to adjust to a husband who went from being physically strong and able to financially support us, to a man who struggles to function from day to day. As I write this I am experiencing a spinal flare up that has me off work and unable to stay on my feet. It’s debilitating on every level. I am now classed as disabled.

Pain is a reality of my life now

The main problem in all of this has been the mental struggle. The negativity and pressure I have felt from being unable to financially support my family as I once did. It has been draining and difficult to deal with. The one saving grace has been meditation. As a recovered alcoholic I meditated daily before the accident. It was a practice that allowed me to build resilience to stress.

The biggest issue with chronic pain, as I discovered, is mental health. I figured out early that I could do little about the pain, but I did need to overcome the resentment and trauma that came along with it. I experienced negative thinking and even suicide ideation as a direct result of living in pain. It was the meditation that saved me from my thinking.

I continued to meditate daily no matter how much I was suffering. And From continued conscious awareness I was able to step away from thinking and deal with life from a neutral perspective. Meditation saved me from myself. It gave me all I needed to manage each day. I still experience negativity but the difference is that it doesn’t drag me down as it once did. I still suffer from time to time but I never stay down for long.

If you are suffering mentally from anything in your life, from relationship troubles to chronic pain illness I can recommend non contemplative meditation. This is so simple it needs to be experienced to be believed. Just 15 minutes twice a day is enough for this powerful awakening exercise to become affective in your life – no matter what your troubles. It is completely free and can be practiced anywhere, anytime you have a quiet moment. I practice it at least 4 times a day and it helps me stay focused on life in real time, as life unfolds.

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