Saturday, 2 January 2016

A Year in Review

It seems like everywhere in blog-land reviews of 2015 and goals for 2016 are abundant. As 2015 is the first (half) year of our blog, we thought it would be fun to look back on our beginning.

Back in July we decided to start a blog, sat down, came up with a name and wrote our first post. Neither of us knew what to expect or where it would go, but we definitely had a lot to say on the topic - our list of ideas just kept growing and growing. 

For us the blog has been a journey. Writing some of these posts has brought tears. Others have challenged us both personally and professionally. We’ve learned a lot and read journal articles for “fun.” We’ve tried out some of the things we’re learning in our own lives. We’ve met some really great people, both online and in person. We get excited as we see our number of readers and our e-mail list grow. One of our first e-mails to each other went like this:

C: We’ve had 118 views on our blog. Do you think that was all us dealing with our formatting?
A: Well, I have a confession to make. I looked at it 118 times yesterday. (Totally joking)

But the cool news is it isn’t just us who is reading our blog. We’re excited to see all the locations our blog is reaching, and so grateful for the beautiful comments and questions we have received along the way. 

So, like any good blog review post, here’s a look back at some of the key points we’ve learned in 2015:

1.) It’s all about the nervous system. Well, we’ll admit, there are some other pieces in there. But we’ve come to realize that any helpful approach to pain management needs to take the nervous system into consideration. We’ve also realized just how much this is NOT discussed in conventional pain management. 

2.) Pain asks to be respected. There will be more on this topic in the future. Pain is, at the very basic level, an alarm. Ignoring it can lead to your body sounding the alarm louder. 

3.) There is lots of amazing information out there. And lots of people who are super excited about pain management and doing really cool research and clinical work.

4.) There are many tools that can help individuals take back some control of their lives. These tools can include: energy conservation, pacing, and planning. We’ve both had some very cool “reclaiming” moments in our own lives this past year. 

5.) There are people who are “pain superstars” and we can all learn from each other. In fact, everyone has their own superstar moments. 

6.) Sometimes pain doesn’t need to be viewed as the enemy or something that needs to be overcome or beaten. Sometimes a gentler approach is what is needed. We love Bronnie Thompson’s use of the term “flexible persistence.” 

So what’s next for our blog? Well, that picture is still forming. We have lots of ideas and topics we want to explore. This includes things that we’ve discussed lately but also questions that we’ve been asked by our readers. Please feel free to continue sharing your thoughts, experiences, insights, and questions. We love receiving your e-mails and comments! The ideas around pain management are expanding and changing at the moment. We really want to learn all we can and share this information with you in the coming year. While we don’t know exactly what 2016 will look like for our blog, we’re excited to see where it goes. We hope it’s full of lots of interesting, useful posts and over time becomes a place of encouragement, information and celebration of successes.

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