I feel like a cracked porcelain doll that keeps breaking and has been glued back together so many times that there’s more glued cracks than doll left. On days like Tuesday where we can go out in a meticulous and calculated way, I can almost forget that it isn’t so. Pain is invisible and I’m very very thankful for that. It’s cobwebs in my head and an ocean underneath the surface that’s just mine to do with as I like.

I was watching ‘The Answer Man’ this morning, my lower back is a mess at the moment and as people will tell you, back pain is pure undiluted agony. Add hip and SI joint instability to the mix and the fun triples. It took more than half an hour to make it down the stairs and collapse on the couch and just reaching the mouse brought tears to my eyes. I got to the scene where the main character collapses with back pain onto the hallway carpet and just lay there on the floor all night. Eventually, he crawls to the local chiropractor’s office, begging for help. Scenes like that is always funnier when you’ve been there. I really struggled last night to make the few flat steps into the garden and ended up semi-intentionally lying on the solid tiles staring at the cloudy sky, pretty much unable to do much of anything else. It took forever to very slowly make it up the stairs. I made it as far as the landing before I started crying. I spent quite some time lying on the floor, staring at the ceiling, too scared to even try and move. It’s not an unfamiliar place. I still think I’m lucky enough to have the kind of back problems that’s interim and can sometimes be fixed by just sliding bones back to where they should be. Sometimes bones refuse to go back or stay put, but it’s a manageable problem. The nerve damage that goes with it and the pain is less manageable, but still, temporary flares beats the hell out of permanent agony.

We had to take the wheelchair to the supermarket tonight. It wasn’t an option, it was just required. It’s difficult after having a bad week symptom wise but a reasonable week joint wise to suddenly be back to pretty much unable to move most of the time. Walking is hell, sitting is no better, standing makes things click and shift and even lying down doesn’t really help all that much. I’m spending so much time pushing bones back into place that my thumbs are starting to dislocate from the effort. It’s not fun or funny anymore. It just hurts and I feel broken and not patched up. Some pieces just can’t be glued together again and nothing will ever be as good as new. “I’m broken”, I complain from the floor. In the past Chris used to say “no, you’re not”, but now, after living through ambulance calls because I’ve stopped breathing and A&E trips and hundreds of dislocations he says “you’re not broken, beautiful, you’re breaking, there’s a difference”.