carlota(So. Calif. z.9)July 14, 2009

Hi Friends,

Those who know me know I was diagnosed with congenital degenerative spinal stenosis a while back. The pain I live with is a burden I loath to share with anyone. The look in the eyes of people I care about when they glimpse just a hint of the pain is unbearable to me.

So, I hide away. Stoppped posting here because I couldn't bear to speak about my garden I missed. (I'm thrilled my husband is building a new one for me.) Stopped talking to people who couldn't understand and kept telling me that I had to work harder to find a "Cure." The truth that there isn't a cure for me was too much for most people in my life to handle.

Now I am back here, and hearing about old rosy forum friends living with untolerable pain and my heart breaks. Pain makes me feel isolated, I'm sure that I am not the only one who feels that way.

Maybe together we can share the burdens and find solace in eachother.

We can't take away eachothers pain, which would be my wish. But we can let eachother know that we aren't alone/

So, here I am ready to listen and be supportive of anyone who needs it. You are always welcome to email me privately of course, but I am here as well.

Rosy Smiles,


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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Well it is not physical pain but rather the thought of a dear friend and her pain. I just joined Facebook because of a woman I met on another forum. It turns out we both love the same TV shows and I wanted to not lose track of her if she left the forum.

While filling out the information to join they ask for the high school you went to and the year you graduated. There are 99 fellow class mates of mine on facebook. Most of them were just people I knew or in many cases people I do not remember having a class with. But right there on the page was the woman that I had known ever since fall 1974 and who had been in emotional pain the last time I saw her at the 25 year reunion four years ago.

The last time I saw her she was in a frame of mind that made it hard for her to listen to what people said to her. Particularly if they tried to tell her they really did remember her and wanted to really have a good long talk. Her friend who was there also told me as an aside that she had been married to a verbally abusive guy who had spent several years tearing her down emotionally. I knew she would not listen to me in the frame of mind she was in and I have spent the last four years trying to think of a way that I could tell her how special she was to me.

So I see her name and picture on the computer and she was the first person that I asked to be friended by. I did not hear from her for a few days but on the 9th of this month I got the email that I was waiting for. I immediately messaged her and told her that the reason I had not recognized her at the reunion was because she had looked much healthier than I had seen her, even in high school. Also that she was so young looking that it was very hard to place her face, she looked like she was in her early thirties at the latest at that time.

She responded quickly and thanked me for the compliment but added that she was not very memorable so that might have something to do with it.

I responded that second and asked if she remembered the picture that was taken of me standing next to her with another guy from our class. I told her that I had meant to write her name on the back of the picture but after a month realized that I did not have to do that because I was never going to forget her again. I wrote that of all of the people I have ever known that she was most likely the nicest and that I had spent the last four years trying to figure out a way to tell her that she means more to me than almost anything or anyone. I wrote that I knew that telling these things to her face would be hard and that she might very well do what I myself have done in the past which is to discount what was said or figure that I could not possibly be who they were talking about. I wrote that this comes from the bottom of my heart and to please take it as the truth because I truly mean ever word.

The next day her reply came up on my computer. She thanked me for everything I wrote and then told me things I had never known such as why she has been ill looking in school all of those years ago. Not to mention things that had happened in the last four years and that she had finally come to grips with the fact that she was ok and that nothing was wrong with her.

She ended with this line, Wow I don't know why I just opened my heart to you like that.

With that I realized that not only had she read everything I had wrote but she understood what I had meant. Right then she had a guy breakdown in a full blown cry for his friend and the fact that she understood how much she really meant.

After a long hard cry I messaged her back and told her thank you for opening up to me. Now I have one last thing I have to say to you about this. Thinking about the pain I saw in your eyes at the reunion has been a recurring thought in my mind ever since that day and I had no way until now that I could let you know how I really felt about that memory. Knowing that you were in pain and not having a way to let you know how I was feeling about it was tearing me up. You are truly a one in a million friend, I will never forget you.

Your Friend


    Bookmark   July 15, 2009 at 11:33AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

You are a wonderful person who deserves the Rose Award for caring and friendship. (I don't know if there is a rose award but I just created it.)
I neglected to mention emotional pain. For that I am very sorry. Emotional pain is often hidden by those who are suffering through it and the people around them have a much harder time seeing it.
People living with any type of pain often feel isolated and try to hide their pain from the world. At least I know that is what I do.
A moments happiness often outweighs the pain we are living with daily.
Personally, I have been reaching out to people I love and telling them that I still love them. Apologizing for not being in touch, explaining that I hated seeing their frustration and hurt for not being able to help me.
My goal with this topic was to create a haven for people living with pain to share and be supported. If it wasn't for this rose forum I probably wouldn't have made it through my original diagnosis. The outpouring of caring support really made a big difference in my life.
So, my hope...let this thread be the a place where people in pain - any pain- can come and share and be supported by rosy friends.

On a different note, last night I had to stay up and watch my husbands blood sugar. I was tired so I attempted to clean. My fridge looks gorgeous but today I can't walk. My poor husband hugged me as I cried in pain and frustration. All I did was clean the fridge, why does it feel like I'm being punished? Such a simple chore I used to do twice a week. Now one cleaning has left me unable to walk.

Coming here and reading paparosemans post has given me emotional strength.

Rosy Smiles to all,

    Bookmark   July 15, 2009 at 6:16PM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Carlota, thank you for your support. I was not worried about you not mentioning emotional pain. I myself have hidden emotional pain for years, I finally decided to do something about it when I got to around age thirty. I have never in my life had many guy friends. Even as a little kid I noticed that if it was just me and one other boy things were fine but if another boy showed up I ended up on the sidelines.

When I joined the army things were different, the same guys were around me 24/7 and they must have gotten used to me somehow. The first summer that we were stationed at Fort Lewis in Washington State I was one of the few who knew the area having lived close by for most of my life.

We were training in the field every week which means sleeping on the ground without tents or showers all week. I asked one guy from New York if he wanted to go to the Pacific Coast and he said yes. We went out and spent the weekend sleeping on the ground and fishing from the cliffs overlooking the waves.

This happened several times with different guys, I would take them to see places in the state that most guys would not know existed since they were not familiar with the area.

After I got out of the army things returned to the way they had always been. I knew guys at work and we were sort of friends but I never got invited to anything while the other guys would be planning a night at a bar doing guy stuff or going to one another's house to watch the game on Sunday. I loved my job and most everything else was great but I obsessed over this one thing I could not control.

This went on for several years while I pondered why I was not popular or wanted enough to hang out with the guys. It finally dawned on me one day that when I was in the army there were guys that wanted to be around me enough that they would actually sleep on the ground on the weekend when they could have been sleeping on a bed and having a few beers. Having realized that, I decided that if guys were not going to be a good choice to have as friends since I was not going to ever be in the army again I had better come up with a plan.

I had always had girlfriends, not the kind you want to sleep with or have an idea you may one day. Just girls or as I got older women that were fun to be around or talk to. Over time I found several women who shared common interests or goals some of whom are on this forum to be friends with. As I worked to develop a framework of women friends my outlook improved and I do not worry about if the guys at work care about me as a friend anymore.

When I saw my friend at the 25 year reunion it rekindled a memory of her from when I had first met her. She was always very shy and quiet and in her own words sort of a wall flower. During our recent exchange of messages I pointed out that I was the guy version of her wallflower and had always admired her from afar. The funny or maybe strange thing is that it has never been seen by me as romantic or sexual feelings towards her. I could not explain it if I tried, both her her inner and outer looks are ten on a chart of one to ten and I can only see her as a friend.

I would not have it any other way. As a pure friendship we can go to levels that I have never dreamed of before. We have a huge number of things in common and could talk for hours about the funniest little thing like we used to as teenagers except now we have thirty years of experience, some of it quite rough.

Carlota, I know that there is little that I can do to help you but know that as with my newly re-found friend I am here to listen and encourage you in any way I can.

You friend as well


    Bookmark   July 16, 2009 at 10:18AM
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carla17(Z7 NC)

Hi Carlota, I haven't responded much to your posts because for several reasons, I've stopped coming to these "forums". I have several friends who have various back pain problems and I so sympathize with them. It's sorrowful how it affects some people mentally and emotionally as well.
Now I just try to thank God every day that my health is not worse. I've been battling thyroid and thyroid eye disease for two years now. Thankfully, I have found some forums and am now able to discuss and share with others our problems and feelings. It really helped me to be able to talk with others who are in the same situation. Have you considered searching for some type of forum with people who share your pain/back problems? Please consider it.
As far as Lance, what I do know about him is he is one of the good guys. Open and honest.
Carlota, I miss talking with you. We used to share some things and I always enjoyed chatting with you. My wish for you is some joy, a new rose garden sounds great. My big wish for you is some solution for the pain you're experiencing. My rose interest even waned recently but am sure when cooler weather returns I'll be anxious to get out amongst them. Take care of yourself.


    Bookmark   July 16, 2009 at 4:38PM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

Hi Carla,
Your voice here was always one I looked forward to hearing. Please drop in and chat with me or we can email. I really am trying to become myself again. At least the non-physical part of me, the part of me that tried to hide away.

Thank you for your wish, I wish it too! My rose garden is now up to about 25 roses, some are scentimental to me (okay, that was a rosy misspelling!) but its a joy. I've always loved that my family joins in and enables me with new roses and they are bringing home about one a week. My poor DH hasn't been able to keep up.

I hope your thyroid problems get better really soon. My daughters thyroid was a victim of her immune system, (HashimotoÂs) as part of her lupus. Thyroid problems can effect more then most people realize. ItÂs great you found forums that give you a place to share. I occasionally lurk at a few pain forums, but I never felt as comfortable there as I do here with people I know who share my love of roses, gardening and very often animals. Despite its ups and downs, this community has been my haven for years.

I joke that my family got more then its fair share of diseases. My older daughter with her lupus, my husband with his type 1 diabetes and me with my back disease. My poor daughter suffers through pain daily although its not the same pain as mine, and her meds have destroyed her immune system making it difficult for her to have normal teen experiences. But through it all, as a team we have survived and in some ways we are a stronger family unit because of it. She feels she can tell me absolutely anything, calls me the coolest parent ever. And somehow we have managed to keep the balance of my being her mother and Âin charge while being her friend. My poor DH was raised not to discuss his disease and has suffered depression since his diagnosis. His situation showed us how to better handle our daughters. As tough as it is sometimes, we always tell each other the truth.

My younger daughter, the healthy one, needs just as much support as the rest of us. She worries about us a lot and we go out of our way to help her through it. In a family like ours, its just as difficult for the child who is healthy as it is for the one who is ill. ItÂs a juggling act that we will never perfect but do our hardest to balance. In many ways we are our own support group. Some of KimiÂs friends also have lupus and they are great for each other.

Our animals are our a big part of our therapy. So are our gardens. My husband is very excited about his new vegetable garden and loves growing tropical plants. You know me and my roses! My little one will beg us to buy a pineapple just so she can eat it then plant it. We must have a dozen baby pineapple plants by now. She is also our pumpkin grower.
Kimi loves all flowers, but she is also very into fresh culinary herbs and cooking with what we grow. She has an amazing nose for fragrance and an incredible ability to re-create any dish she tastes without a cookbook. Although we rarely use sugar or salt in our cooking and if we do just a touch because of our special dietary needs.

Cats and their precious kittens or dogs and their puppies never seem like work to us, our entire family glows when we have babies around. I wish we could still rescue horses, but I am no longer able to train the horses or teach my children to ride. Rocky Racoon, my doggy is a service and therapy dog who makes any bad day seem better. Mikku, KimiÂs doggy is a therapy dog who knows just how much love Kimi needs and when she needs it. We are looking for a new dog to rescue for Anastiina, this dogs only responsibility will be loving my daughter. IÂm trying to talk her into something smaller then a great dane!

Would you mind if I emailed you privately about something? Personally, most of my closest friends in the past have been men. My best friend of over 20 years married a couple years ago and then moved to upper Idaho. I miss him desperately, IÂm thrilled heÂs happy but I feel like I am missing an essential part of my life. Heck, my whole family misses him dearly. My girls keep begging him to come visit. My husband misses having his pal around. Sometimes it is easier to be close friends with the opposite sex. Okay, I admit we never watched football together, but occasionally we watched baseball. Mainly we just talked about everything. Nothing was off limits. Dear friends are precious and a few dear friends who will stand by you through the worst of it all are worth more then a hundred who really donÂt know you at all.

You sound like one of the special ones. A friend who knows how to bring sunshine and roses into another persons life. You have a special gift. And to anyone who can call you a friend, I believe you to be a special gift to them. As I said, you deserve the Rose Award!

Ok, enough rambling for tonight. IÂm sorry to have gone on and on this way. Like a rambling rose I just went on and on tonight showing the thorns in my life and a the blooms that make me more.

Rosy smiles to all, and thank you for taking the time to read what was on my mind.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2009 at 6:03AM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Carlota, I would love for you to email me. I have had a few people email me from the aquariums forum here at Gardenweb and they always say they are sorry for disturbing me. I enjoy getting emails from friends or people who want more information than what I post to a thread.

You can ask anything you want, one of my favorite things in life is helping in any way that I can.


    Bookmark   July 17, 2009 at 10:32AM
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I'll jump in next..

Carla, nice to see you posting. I'm sorry for what you are going through. Having health issues and trying to raise a teenager are especially hard. Sending you some cyber hugs...

Most people know my story; I think I was the original one with back problems way back when and I used to share. It was so very hard to be young & injured. I used to have hopes that I'd get to live a semi decent life; my garden would be planted, I'd be able to enjoy walking around, taking pictures and cutting blooms. Yeah, ha ha, dream on.

My pain has isolated me. I've stopped talking about it because people got tired of hearing it. I've been banned from one forum due to my pain. That was the hardest to accept. Funny how when one door closed, another opened & I found new interests. I changed my online name & had a new online life. Things I did with that profile I never would have dreamed I'd do. It kept me busy; made me feel needed & appreciated.

Losing my dad 3 years ago, was worst for me then any pain I have. I never felt alone when he was alive; he accepted me the way I was & was there for me during my back surgeries. Facing my next surgery after he passed, knowing he would not be there this time when I woke up was hard.

I'm probably facing another surgery. I think I need the rods taken out, they give me a lot of pain. The problem is, I can't be down for 8 months again. So I put it off. They can't promise me that taking the rods out will help.

The pain is excruciating. Like you Carlotta, things take me so long to do; but you try and you pay for it. I have a few days where I can mentally block it; because things have gone too long without doing.. then you pay the price. No one understands the pain.. I don't think anyone in their wildest dreams can imagine someone living in this much pain. Quality of life? Not much.

I've been there and done that trying to control the pain and find a solution. Injections, surgery, medications, a pump. My one Dr says that I'm one of a handful of people that he can't do much for.

Outside my window is a lot of color; oranges, red, white with pink, pink, hot pink, & purple.Thankfully the JB's don't hang out on these plants. I get to enjoy them.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2009 at 9:38AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

To all my friends,
I've been having problems with my pain and having difficulty typing. The stenosis is effecting all my vertabrea not just lumbar and when it acts up around my neck typing becomes a major challenge.

Thank you to everyone here who lives with pain and/or cares about what I and others are living through. While I can't pretend that I know the pain of roselvr, exactly, I do know horrific isolating pain and the desire for a normal life.

To me, knowing I have friends out there who care means alot to me. I would never wish this pain on anyone. But I thank those of you living with pain for speaking up, I feel less alone now.

A big bushel of rosy thanks,

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 7:16AM
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I'm here too------We have a new laptop and just switched to FIOS so it is taking me time to adjust--

I can sympathize with everyone in pain----I'll be back as soon as I figure out this new computer----LOL

Take care everyone--


    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 10:52AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

Hi Florence,
I'm glad you are here. The next couple days will be distracting for me. My husband and mothers birthdays are this week. But I'll check in regularly. I sincerely hope your feeling better even a little bit.
Rosy Smiles,

    Bookmark   July 23, 2009 at 8:00AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

Hi All,
I disappeared for the weekend because for the first time in years we actually threw a party. It was wonderful. Thank you Lance for motivating me, I remembered to practice what you preach so I did! It was my dh's birthday and our friends were wonderful. They pretended that they couldn't see me struggling to control the pain and struggling to walk. They all pitched in and made it a great party.

I was so nervous. I didn't want to be asked "how are you?" and burst into tears trying to answer. I've been hiding from friends and family for so long I wasn't sure I would remember how to have a party.

Though I was in pain, it was a great time. My husband seems happier then he's been in years. I had a flash of insight... my pain didn't isolate me. I isolated myself because of the pain.

I want to all of you here who unknowningly gave me the courage to throw a party.

Rosy Smiles,

    Bookmark   July 30, 2009 at 12:26AM
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petaloid(SoCal 10a/24)

Good for you, Carlota -- so happy to hear that you and your husband had a great time at the party.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 12:42AM
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Carlota, the thing is one has to isolate themselves due to pain or your friends might slowly go away if they have to see you like that more often. Most people can't relate; some think that the times they do see you and you manage to try to forget the pain (like at a party) that you can do it all of the time.

I know I owe you an email. I need to make another account because I get so much junk in my main one.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 4:23PM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Carlota:I am so glad to hear the party went well. If I lived closer you could have just pressed me into service as your guy Friday. I know there is not much that friends or family can do to ease physical pain but know that I am always a phone call or email away if you want to vent or talk about anything.

Rosy hug,


    Bookmark   August 1, 2009 at 2:07PM
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sammy zone 7 Tulsa

I won't post much here, but would like to say that we friends would like to know what to say and not say.

In a short note or email, why don't you tell your friends what would make you most comfortable. YOu could also have someone contact them, and let them know that you prefer not to talk about health.---or you would like to talk without receiving advice. Possibly you would prefer to not receive emails about new health information, new ideas, etc.

I have been on the receiving end of these requests and it is very helpful. I have also been the spokesperson, and I think that satisfies many people.

Friends, even casual aquaintances, really care, but what they feel is helpful could be something that would be hurtful. Our good intentions could be better served if we knew what would make you most comfortable.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 7:24AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

Dear Sammy,
I must admit to trying email first, now my DH and friend Jane know enough that they are able to speak up for me. My DH keeps everyone informed, my friend is my biggest advocate. She covered for me at the party and didnt even mention it.
I'm startig a family webletter to update everyone That way everyone feels that they are in the loop.
What makes me feel best is when people don't dwell on my disability and only mention when I do.
I still feel frustrated when I am confronted by things I want to do, that are a normal or where a normal part of my life and I cant do them anymore.
I do hope you post here regularly. Your understanding would be a valuable insight.

Paparoseman, Party on Sept 6 be there or be square! Ok, if you can make it, great if not we understand it is quite a distance to drive.

Rosy Regards,

    Bookmark   August 2, 2009 at 12:00PM
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jannorcal(No CA z9)

Hi Carlota,
Lance told me about this thread. I can truly relate to your situation. Chronic pain is the story of my life as well. I don't have spinal stenosis like you, but instead have thoracic outlet syndrome - compression of the nerves to my right arm/shoulder. I had surgery last year and my pain is a lot better, but not totally resolved.
My friends and family could not appreciate that just vacuuming or doing laundry would incapacitate me for the next few days. What makes it worse is that I look normal. Sometimes I wish that I had a cane or some other visible abnormality so that people would have a cue that I am impaired.
Gardening has been my outlet and it has been great for me to be involved with the Sacramento cemetery. Rose friends have been a great support for me thruout the past few years.
With empathy,

    Bookmark   August 22, 2009 at 2:25PM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Carlota, an update where I think it might be safe to write. I cannot even write down how bad things are now. I opened up to friends about my issues and now I find myself under attack for what is seen as cheating. I was told in no uncertain terms that I am not to discuss emotional issues outside of the relationship. The big problem is that I have spent so many years hiding my emotions where I could not be hurt that I can really only talk to people who are not really close to me physically.

Somewhere in my mind it seems safe to talk to people who are not right here with me so if they hurt me it may not seem as bad. If I could tell you how I feel now we would both be crying for a long time.

It is times like this where I really regret having dug up the long dead and buried thoughts that led me for so long. Stuffing them back into their vault is going to be a task.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2009 at 10:10PM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

I understand your pain. Don't close down again. IsoPaa was a good safe friendly dog we had for years. Very trustworthy.
Don't hide your feelings again. You are/were happy, sometimes that's hard for others to understand. It's tough talking about this here.
It is safe for you to talk here. And, you have friends here who value your friendship. You helped me in dealing with my physical and emotional pain. Being in pain one feels so alone.
My appologies if this seems like a cryptic answer. Know that your friendship is valued and not taken lightly. As I said previously, friends are precious.
Rosy Smiles,
Yr Friend,

    Bookmark   September 2, 2009 at 2:13AM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Calota, thank you. If you knew just how far this ran you would be surprised. My cell get little use because I cannot even call unless the person on the other end knows ahead of time. For whatever reason I think of myself as below a telemarketeer. And we know what we think of them.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2009 at 3:38AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

Lance, Your conversations with me uplifted my spirits and made me forget the physical pain while we talked. That is much better then any telemarketer!!! Heck, that's better then some family too. You do truly deserve to be truly fully happy, think on that. Gosh, I must be tired, my language skills today are not so good!
I once pondered the dynamics of friendships and other relationships. My husband is the ying to my yang. Where I am assertive he's mellow. I uplift him and he mellows me out when I get stressed or upset. My BFF is just like me, we have very similar personalities and finish sentences for eachother. But, at the same time we are eachothers therapist. I can tell him anything without offending him and vise versa. Maybe we choose friends more thoughtfully then we know... some have a special quality that we wish to have, some share a common interest thats very important, some are our opposites and maybe sometimes we want to be like them and so on...
I picked my spouse because I had never met another man like him. He fit my personality perfectly and we complement eachother. I could go through each friend I have and what they mean to me, but they all are very special in their own unique way.
I sure hope you answer blocked calls? Just a thought.

Please don't sell yourself short in terms of friendship. You have many friends, probably more then you know. You have to deal with some tough questions right now, the main one being, "what do you want, and what makes you happy?" You deserve to have both, the answer is there you just have to find it.

I have read the pain in your words, I am concerned. Remember, we love roses inspite of the thorns. Relationships all have thorns, and most of them are worth it. I haven't been able to shovel prune in years!

My heart goes out to you. You know where to find me and that I am here for you. I might be slow on the computer somedays because my back is getting worse again, time to go back to the dr and ask for a change. Until then, I will try to be available but typing can be painful sometimes.

Yr Rosy Friend Always,

    Bookmark   September 2, 2009 at 7:12AM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Carlota, your words of encouragement have meant so much to me. Betty and I are on track and talking better than we have in a long time. I know that we have built a strong bond that is getting stronger everyday. I need to continue working on talking through everything with her but at least now things are on a smooth course

The friendship we are building between you and myself is one of my favorite recent accomplishments. I have not had many friends that I could talk to for so long that the end of the conversation is caused by low cell batteries. If I had unlimited time we would only be off the phone long enough for my personal time with Betty and going to work. I can tell from your voice what kind of day you are having and I want you to know that no matter what that I stand as your friend through everything that can happen or will happen.

Your rosy friend forever,


    Bookmark   September 15, 2009 at 3:07AM
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reemcook(8a PNW)

Dear Carlota,

Thank you for sharing your life experience with pain. I am sorry that you are going through so much suffering. Mental and physical challenges are really isolating. I empathize and understand that it has been very difficult for you to be outspoken about your debilitating pain. You are a strong lady and I am proud of you!

I am sailing in the same boat with regards to pain. I have fibromyalgia and other health problems which make my life hell. There are many days when I cannot even get up from bed. On other days, I push myself and fail miserably. Any form of physical activity causes excruciating pain. I undergo severe bouts of depression and sadness because of my inability to erase the pain.

In our society, revealing personal battles is cultural stigma. This is an intriguing societal tenet because it is different from the one in which I was raised. We are playing an instrumental role in causing a paradigm shift from enchaining stigmatism about voicing our struggles with pain (and other health conditions). I admit to faltering in maintaining perpetual positivity.

Ignition of love for roses is a life altering experience. It has opened the doors of hope in my soul. There are two unsung heroes on the Rose forums, Lance and Sue, with whose support my self-created fortress of isolation is slowly crumbling. Roses are influencing my life in more ways than I could ever imagine. I am grateful to God for the individuals on the Rose forums who extend caring towards one another in addition to imparting their knowledge.

Best regards,


    Bookmark   September 16, 2009 at 3:04PM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Reem, by the time I am done with you your walls of isolation will be replaced by towering climbing canes of rosy strength. Their glowing flowers will feed within you a sense of peace and calm that will flow through your whole body.

I hear and understand your difficulties, you are like a sister to me and I will not let you down.


    Bookmark   September 16, 2009 at 9:40PM
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reemcook(8a PNW)

Hi Lance,

First of all, your statement "by the time I am done with you..." holds no merit! Your culturally abrasive sister will haunt you for a lifetime. :) I am very grateful for your help and support. Roses have connected a long long family!

Your loving (and rarely demanding) sister,


    Bookmark   September 16, 2009 at 10:04PM
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meredith_e Z7b, Piedmont of NC, 1000' elevation

Prayers to everyone suffering from pain... and hugs, but gentle ones!

Mine [my back/neck] is better and worse. I'm very fortunate that I've found all kinds of little tricks that make it fine most days. I'm not as bitter as I was about how many things I can't do; it just took time. And sometimes I do them anyway and plan a week of downtime ;) I think that's very lucky, too, really.

So I'm doing very well. I truly hope that everyone else finds some peace, too.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2009 at 11:59PM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

I am glad to hear you are having good days. Don't you just wish we could erase the bad days from our memories? I would love to hear the tricks you use and found helpful. I am unsure of what is causing your pain but anything that might help would be very welcome!
Gentle rosy hugs right back at you!

Reem, As you know I owe you an email and a call. I do promise I will do them both! I am thrilled to see you posting here and am glad that your friendships made with roses have helped. Call him Sir Lancelot, it suits him perfectly!

I often have a bad time typing so I don't do it as much as talking but I am here for anyone who needs to talk via email or any other form of communication.

Rosy Hugs to all my friends out there who are dealing with pain in any form.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2009 at 1:24AM
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paparoseman(z8 WA. PO.)

Carlota it seems like forever but it had only been just over two months since one of the best friendships of my life began. In your original post you mentioned that you are loath to share your pain with others because of the guilt or sorrow that they feel.

It has been my great pleasure to be a friend who can listen and help you through the bad times as well as help you have a few good laughs to break things up. I think that we are each others yin and yang together. It makes for a great combination, two people who can be each others support and comfort at any time.

As to the Sir Lancelot thing I find it hard to believe that you not only have me as your knight but also the Finnish Gladiator. Many women have a hard time finding just one and here you have two. I am happy to be the second hero who takes an arrow in the final scene so that the Gladiator can save the Queen.

Although your medical condition is not something you can be saved from I am ready to be at your side for as long as you want me.

Markku needs a person to take that final arrow for him.

Your friend,

Sir Lancelot.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 3:47AM
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carlota(So. Calif. z.9)

Sir Lancelot,
People are going to begin to talk! LOL You have been a great friend to me and I thank you for allowing me to share my pain with you. Having a friend who will listen and share is a very precious gift.

There are others here who have also been an amazing comfort to me and incredible friends, and I feel that I should give them the credit they deserve. All of you know who you are and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Knowing such amazing people who give of themselves so freely and willingly fills me with joy. A HUGE rosy thanks to all my dear friends out there.

I am also glad that this thread has lived on and hasn't disappeared into the mist. So many people live in pain each day and don't have anyone to talk to or share it with. I am indeed happy to know that this one thread is giving everyone who wants to talk about their pain a place to talk.

Lancelot, on behalf of my Markku who plants all my roses and takes care of them for me, I am passing on a warm thank you. He too is enjoying the new friendship we all have and appreciates you being there for us both. It means a great deal to us and words will never express how much it does. Maybe I should try expressing it with roses? But geez, where on earth would you put more roses?????

For any who don't know, I've given Lance the nickname, Sir Lancelot of Roses for many reasons. It suits him.

Again, a big rosy thanks to all who post, read and care about each others pain and problems.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 5:24AM
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How are you doing today Carlota? Hope things are a bit better. I think lots of us know of pain. I have the stenosis in my neck from a congenial deformity of the vertabrae not fusing on the left side of my neck. Now I have sculiosis(sp) of the neck. I opted NOT to have surgery, just can't do that route right now. Celebrex is helping for right now.

I agree about Lance. He is a pure doll, so very sweet and giving. I won't ever forget the Marie de'Orleans rose he sent to me. That thing is 6 X 6 today and people stop to admire it. I call it my Lance rose and I love it so.
Lance is one of the first people I "met" on the rose forum all those years ago. Lance always answered my crazy rose questions very patiently and clearly.
You are one in a million Lance, I want you to know that. Never think other wise.

Deb :o))))))

    Bookmark   September 23, 2009 at 2:09PM
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