Chronic Pain Testimonies
Real stories of individuals dealing with chronic pain
My Name is Anne-Marie, and this is My Story...
I am among the millions of people whose lives have been affected by chronic pain...
I’ll never forget that day on March 29, 2009. I woke up to the most severe pain in my legs and lower back and could barely manage to walk. It came on suddenly, without warning, and intensified so quickly that I had to call in sick to work. My husband rushed me to the Emergency Room. After a series of tests such as x-rays, blood work, and other procedures they sent me home with undefined muscle pain.
In the years to follow, I underwent test after test, such as bone scans, nerve conduction studies, brain scans (to rule out MS), x-rays, and other procedures but because the doctors could not find the source of the pain, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. I went to chiropractors, physical therapists and tried alternative healing methods but to no avail. I went from doctor to doctor desperate for answers. I knew there had to be another reason for the pain I was having, but no one would believe me.
Eventually I had to quit my job at Hanford and go on disability. I had to file for bankruptcy because I couldn’t keep up with the medical bills. For the next six years, I struggled with the most terrorizing pain imaginable. I couldn’t dress myself or leave the house, or drive anywhere and was completely bedridden. I was in agony 24 hours a day, and no one could tell me why. During this time I depended solely on my husband to care for me which became a heavy burden on him and affected our marriage in every aspect. The world was going on all around me, but I was not part of it. Fentanyl and Methadone were becoming my only friends, and my worst enemies.
Finally, in December 2015, my surgeon ordered an MRI of my lower spine and found I had spinal stenosis. At last I had a reason for the pain! Finding the source of pain was vital and the first step to my recovery. Immediately I had a Laminectomy surgery to clear out the spinal stenosis. It helped alleviate some of the pain, but after a couple of years it became a welcome mat for severe arthritis to develop in the L2 through S1 vertebraes.
Once the pain came back following the Laminectomy, I then had a Lumbar Ablation procedure in which they cauterize the affected nerves responsible for the pain. It took 4-6 weeks for the nerves to die before I got some relief, but I highly recommend this surgery because it reduced the pain by at least 75%, and was well worth waiting for. It was the first time in 9 years that I finally got relief from constant pain.
I have Degenerative Facet Arthropathy (arthritis) in my lower spine. It is also present in my hips and knees. Living with arthritic pain, or any kind of chronic pain is very difficult and challenging. Because it is a progressive disease, I may be facing more back surgeries in the years to come.
Today, after overcoming six tortuous years of seclusion, narcotics addiction, and severe depression, I surrendered my life to Jesus. I got saved by a worship song I heard on Positive Life Radio. Not long after that I began watching Christian television - it all made sense and hit me like a tidal wave. Right then I knew it was Him lifting me out of the darkness and helping me to heal. Little by little I was able to get out of bed and care for myself once again and my darkest days were becoming brighter. Being born again is a joy that is too hard to contain!
Sometimes our tragedies can provide opportunities that we never saw before and hope can be restored. I pray my story will serve as an inspiration to others who may be living with chronic pain and to know if He can do it for me, He can do it for you as well.
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”.. Philippians 4:13
— Anne-Marie Nelson
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Your story just might help another on their journey. You can remain anonymous if you prefer.