In August 2016, Tamara Cunningham from the Nanaimo News Bulletin interviewed both Kate and I (Jen), Co-founders of CRPS Hope and Awareness Foundation, about the establishment of our new foundation called CRPS Hope & Awareness Foundation.
Tamara spent quite a bit of time with us and really showed an interest in trying to understand the nature of this disease, but we could tell it was difficult for her. As CRPS sufferers, Kate and I realize that it is very difficult to understand how we can say we are in excruciating pain 24/7 but still be present and able to hold a conversation with someone. Not only that, we are out of bed, dressed, drove ourselves to the newspaper office, and still managed to be able to think clearly enough to communicate with her for about an hour.
When someone is experiencing acute pain, the last thing that crosses their mind is to schedule an interview with a newspaper reporter and let her take a picture that will be put in the paper for the whole community to see. But as Kate described to Tamara in our interview, as someone who suffers from chronic pain, we have two choices. The first is to spend our whole life in bed while still in unbearable pain, or to try and live our lives as normally as possible given our restrictions. The disease has already striped so much away from us, we could no longer give it the power to take our whole life away.
As mothers, wives, daughters, siblings and friends, we have to get out of bed every morning, get dressed, put a smile on our face and take care of those who need us. All the while we are doing this with searing, burning pain bombarding all four of our limbs. We had a choice, let the disease kill the essence of who we are, or fight back with all we have. Our fight led to the birth of CRPS Hope & Awareness Foundation.