Interview with Sarah Anne Shockley

Why do you write about pain?
Most of the books I have run across on chronic pain are written by practitioners and address pain almost exclusively on a physical level, suggesting physical manipulations or exercises to manage or reduce pain. These have their place, of course, but what I want to offer with my books is the perspective of someone who has been living with and dealing with pain day in and day out for a number of years, an insider’s view, so to speak. I also wanted to address the many emotional and psychological challenges and stresses that people in pain face every day that practitioners may not be aware of or equipped to offer advice about, understandably.
What is your experience with chronic pain?
In the fall of 2007, I developed Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS) due to prolonged non-ergonomic computer use. Simply put, the area between my collarbones and first ribs collapsed, severely compressing the space to less than 20% of its normal width on both sides of my body. This compression squeezed a major artery, veins, nerve ganglia, and the large scalene muscles running down from the neck to the first ribs, all of which must fit through this relatively small space. This caused severe nerve pain which I have lived with ever since.
What's different about your approach to chronic pain?
People who suffer from chronic pain have usually tried countless methods of pain relief, from physical therapy to medication to alternative modalities, but with little or no success in ending pain and restoring health. Over the eight years I have had to live with chronic pain, I developed a different approach which I found to be more beneficial and which produces greater relief. This approach advocates learning to understand and work with pain as a messenger and an ally in healing, rather than fighting against it as an enemy. I developed my own techniques of pain management and pain relief, including meditations and creative exercises, that established a more positive and constructive relationship with pain, thereby reducing my overall experience of pain, and creating greater ease and resiliency in my body and in my life. I believe this approach may be useful to others who are not finding relief through traditional, or even alternative, avenues.
Published 2015-11-20.
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Books by This Author

The Light at the Center of Pain
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 19,100. Language: English. Published: April 20, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Pain management, Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Emotional healing
Messages of hope and renewal for people in chronic pain. The Light in the Center of Pain is a collection of essays based on popular posts from The Pain Companion Blog. Both philosophical and practical in nature, they provide insights, meditations, and sage advice on living with chronic pain.
30 Days Of Living Better While Living With Pain
Price: Free! Words: 3,940. Language: English. Published: March 23, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Pain management, Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Alternative therapies
30 brief, inspiring daily readings with suggestions and insights to relieve the emotional and spiritual stresses of living with chronic pain. Beautiful color images. Based on the author's popular book, Living Better While Living With Pain.
Living Better While Living With Pain
Price: Free! Words: 12,290. Language: English. Published: November 20, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Pain management, Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Healing
Beginning with a discussion of the ways in which chronic pain is experienced differently from short-term pain, Living Better While Living With Pain offers useful suggestions for approaches to pain management and pain reduction specifically for chronic pain sufferers including 21 practical tips for creating more ease, comfort, and resiliency right now. Updated 2017.