Now I know the pain is only going to be very short term

Rick is 49 years old, works in the transport industry and loves Chevy cars and motorbikes. In 2006, Rick was involved in a motor vehicle accident: “…I was rear ended. Before that, I had no back or leg pain. I was fit and played golf all the time, at least once a week”.

After the accident, Rick started to get pain in his shoulders (shooting pain into his fingers) and then his low back pain also became painful, with pain extending into his leg and toes.

Rick started with physio to get rid of his shoulder pain. The pain went and hasn’t been a problem since. But his low back pain has persisted.

“I couldn’t stand longer than 5 minutes or sit for long in one spot. I kept going back to the surgeon…working was difficult. I was very anxious during the whole process. It was affecting my personal and work life… the constant pain. I felt the surgeons weren’t able to help me. At some stages, I felt that they thought I was making it up, which made me feel even worse. My confidence was low back then. It affected everything I did. I hated life”.

Having someone alongside Rick who understood the pain experience and provided reassurance, love and support and encouraged Rick to stay active using sensibly paced activity was central to the positive outcomes to his story. This relationship helped to reduce his anxiety and low mood. He avoided surgery and now manages to stay active with a daily paced walk or jog and believes in a bright future.

“Now I know the pain is only going to be very short term. I’m not going to let the pain get to me, which is what I have done the past 12 months and I am going to do what I want to do and continue on. I can see I light at the end of the tunnel after meeting a loved one… it was like a new lease of life. I have never looked back since then”.

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