Pain is a universal human experience, felt by some more than others. Similarly to disability, it can begin at any time in life, whether it exists acutely or grows into chronic pain. According to the Institute of Medicine, chronic pain is a reality for over 100 million Americans. For more than a quarter of my life, at 21 years old, I have lived with severe, unrelenting pain. I no longer remember how it feels to live without it. Nearly every conventional treatment failed me. I’ve received every kind of unsolicited medical advice. I’ve been there, tried that, and still score a seven on the pain scale at best. My pain has become both personal and political.
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