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Pain is NOT Pretty- The Reality of Living with Physical and Emotional Pain

Faithless No More

Recently I have come to a realization about my blog and its content that I feel I need to comment on.  I am aware of the fact that my posts are not considered commercially “upbeat,” however, they are educational and I try to offer solutions, not just to others, but for myself as to ways of living with physical and emotional pain.  The truth is, however, my areas of expertise, from an educational and personal standpoint, are chronic physical and emotional pain.  I am aware of the fact they these neither are “happy” subjects, nor are they “fluff pieces” or even commercial topics, but they are real and they affect millions of people.  The bottom line is, what I write is NOT pretty because pain is NOT pretty.

Sometimes I wish I had an interest in something more “commercial,” a hobby or craft, you know, something happy and upbeat that would bring me thousands of readers, but my intention in writing this blog is not to be commercial, it is to help those who or those whose loved ones are in pain.  I said in my first post and my Biography page, that this blog is a no holds barred, honest look at life with physical and emotional pain.  I DO use harsh language occasionally, and though I try to interject humor, these are not “funny” topics.

Sometimes I will sit down to write a post and I let it go where it wants.  I may start writing with the intention of talking about the benefits of a certain therapy, but when I start writing, the truth comes out and, yes, it can be hard to read.  Not everyone wants to read about what I write, and that’s okay.  The hard, honest truth is that, for some, life is painful and sometimes what I write is a bit hard to swallow, either because it rings true with someone and they recognize it, or it rings true with others and that scares the crap out of them.

There are few people who have never had a depressing thought, and to those I say, you are lucky.  There are others, however, who don’t want to admit to having these thoughts, or to admit how painful these feelings can be.  Most people want to read the happy stories, not the real ones. Heck, even I wish I was writing about unicorns and candy canes sometimes.  It can be very difficult to admit (whether consciously or unconsciously) to feelings of pain, depression, failure and inferiority.  It is painful to tell the world, “I have flaws, I am in pain and sometimes, I am not happy.”  Every time I publish a post I have a momentary feeling of panic and I think, “Do I really want the world to know I am this flawed?”  But, my goal in writing was, if I am going to put myself out there, if I am going to expose the raw, painful feelings that I have, then I am NOT going to pull any punches because these feelings that I (and many others) have are not just real, they are normal, even if that normal is not “happy.”

I do not like, nor do I want to spend my words complaining because, for all the “negative” I write, I do try to offer suggestions, hope and successes, but the bottom line is, this is raw emotion and it is not pretty.  For those of you that read some of these posts and think “That is me, that’s how I feel sometimes,” then you are already a step ahead for admitting it.

I believe there is a bit of a push in this world to make physical and emotional pain disappear, to keep it hidden from the masses so as to not “bum people out,” but it exists and, yes, it does suck and I am trying to take that first step to tell people that physical and emotional pain exists, not just in myself but in millions, and it is real and it cannot be swept under the rug.  Yes, there are good days, months and even years, but sometimes there are bad ones.  I do not want to hide behind sappy, happy rhetoric because not only am I not helping others, I am hiding from myself.  Nor do I want to live and write about misery.  I simply want to tell the truth that these feelings are out there, regardless of what commercial America wants to believe.

Look at your average anti-depression commercial: a sad person is walking in the park with an emotional voiceover talking about how difficult it is to live with the sadness/pain/etc., but thanks to the wonder of modern science and two weeks of taking (insert popular commercialized drug of choice here), they are now a happy person who has forgotten all about the sadness and is now running in a field of flowers and rolling on the grass with loved ones. Sorry to put it in black and white, but life is just not like that.  Yes, medication is often needed, and it can be extremely helpful, but unless you deal with the real emotions behind physical and emotional pain, it won’t magically disappear.  Take it from someone who has been dealing with these issues for a long time, and who has counseled others, there is not a pill in the world that will take away your pain until you recognize it and start to deal with it.  Physical and emotional pain exists and you can choose to ignore it but it won’t go away.  It is for that reason that I advocate for more awareness and help for those who are suffering from physical and emotional pain.

My hope, in the past several months of writing, is that I have reached at least a few people because if I have gotten through to just one person to let them know that it is okay to have these feelings, then I have achieved my goal.  My hope is that if you read this and see yourself in me, that you will fight with me to raise awareness and fight to get better.  My hope is that you will understand that not every post is happy, but I TRY to bring an aspect of hope and solution to each topic I write about and my hope is that you will read this and see it for what it is- the truth.

Photo courtesy of Felipe S. Morin G. via Compfight

Pain is NOT Pretty- The Reality of Living with Physical and Emotional Pain

Tracy Rydzy MSW, LSW

My name is Tracy and I am a licensed social worker. I was working as a Social Worker, when an emergency spinal surgery 2 years ago changed my life and my career. I live with chronic pain and, as a result, I have taken my social work and writing skills, and made them into this blog. This blog is a humorous, informative, no-holds barred honest look at life with chronic pain, depression and disability.”

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APA Reference
Rydzy MSW, T. (2013). Pain is NOT Pretty- The Reality of Living with Physical and Emotional Pain. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 24, 2020, from


Last updated: 10 Aug 2013
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