Hiding in Entertainment and Technology to Escape My Physical Pain

It’s 9:30 in the morning. Right now, I’m running the TV, looking at my cell phone and writing all at once. It’s very minimal in terms of physical requirements. I’m not doing my chores. I’m not eating breakfast. I’m not getting up and walking around. I’m in a weird type of mindset. I’m hiding.

When I say “I’m hiding,” I mean hiding from certain things. I’m hiding from my chores. I’m hiding from people. I’m hiding from the pain that’s already present. I’m doing this because of the reality of what doing each of those things means: pain.


My pain varies day to day. The constant is that every morning, regardless of the day before, I wake up and have trouble sitting up. My back sounds like a bowl of rice cereal with milk being poured over it. I wince and grunt and take sharp breaths. Once I’m finally sitting up, I feel the rest of my body wake up. It is extremely painful. There are sharp little stabs of pain across my feet, my legs, my arms, my neck and my spine. My skin immediately hurts. I open my eyes and look around, thinking to myself, “First step is the first step.”

Right now, my pain isn’t excruciating like it was. It’s teetering in some weird middle land between “bad” and “meh.” I’m hiding because, if I get up and do the things that need to get done, the pain will increase. I’m hiding because I need a rest day and, if I don’t take it, it may take me whether I want to or not. I’m hiding because I know I have to do my daily pick-n-choose of things I can versus things I have to do and that, regardless of what I choose, things will get worse.

I feel, at this point, that if I can just stay still, I’ll be alright. I won’t be great, but I’ll be alright. Of course, it’s unrealistic. I still have to eat, wash my hands, shower, use the bathroom, feed my two rescue kitties, make a budget and an entire list of other things. My want to sit still and hide is not changing that.

I am hiding in a world of fakeness and intangibility. Watching TV, looking things up online, messing around on my phone and listening to music: these are all things that are entertainment- and technology-based. The safe place they offer is one outside of my own body and in my mind. I have to separate the physical from the mental and what better way to do it?

But it’s temporary. At some point, I’m going to get up and start. I’m going to have to open my arms and let the pain in. It will come, flooding, into my body and put me down for hours or days at a time. I know this. But, for now, I’m going to continue to hide. I’m going to hide as long as I can. Right now, even walking is going to bring the pain to me. So, I’m going to hide. I need to hide right now.

You know what? I don’t feel bad for it. Neither should you.

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Thinkstock photo via natasaadzic.

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