Here is one man's story.........
Paul Cardoulis suffers from RSD (www.rsdcanada.org)
"On Saturday, March 28, 1998 I returned to Newfoundland without ever having been in a courtroom in Ontario looking for compensation because of pain...
...yet I returned a very wealthy Canadian.
In January 1996 I was in a motor vehicle accident in St. John's.
Ever since, I had been in constant, unrelenting pain. I wanted the best help to enjoy life again, rather than just live my life. I needed to seek out the best clinic in Canada.
It took a while but on February 27, 1998, I found myself at the Chedoke Pain Management Centre in Hamilton.
Five other Canadians and I traveled to Hamilton seeking help to accept our pain and rekindle the human spirit. Speaking for myself, the gift of human kindness has no price, yet I left a very wealthy Newfoundlander.
Everyone has a story. It is time for the people in Canada to wake up to the fact that one of the best chronic pain clinics in the world is at the corner of Scenic and Sanatorium.
Twenty of the most-skilled professionals have helped thousands of Canadians get on with the rest of their lives, and I will always be grateful that I am one of them.
Medicine is not just MRI's, physio and rehab. It is the healing of the soul.
I pray that I will continue to stay upbeat despite my pain, but I will always remember that I went to the best clinic in the world.
Thank you Ontario."
Paul G. Cardoulis, Newfoundland, taken from the Hamilton Spectator, April 1998
Ten years is a long time. Almost daily I rely on the tools and inspirations that I learned at the Clinic.
About four days after coming home from the Clinic, I took a very hard pain, so bad that I asked my wife to take me to the Hospital for yet another Morphine shot. She reminded me of a simple breathing exercise I had learned only a week ago. I gave it a try and it worked! It worked so well, I haven’t been inside an emergency department for pain control ever since. I have taught friends and family this breathing exercise. It not only helps with pain, it also helps with getting through life’s stresses.
Chedoke taught me that controlling chronic pain is really about coping with life. My journey over the last ten years has been enriched in many ways, and I believe it has been possible because of Chedoke.
At the Clinic I had learned simple things like how to set goals, how to pace yourself and how to read nutrition labels correctly. The things that I didn’t realize I had learned have been the most valuable. For example, most of the staff at the Clinic are chronic pain victims themselves. It took me years to grasp their courage and the determination they demonstrated just doing their jobs. But more importantly they have been an inspiration for me.
Today, I am able to mow my own lawn even, if it takes me two days. I attend significant family events, even though I usually leave early. I go for a walk with my wife, even if it’s only for a short distance. I have come to treasure life’s simple things. I still think to myself, “pace yourself, smile and just do it”.
Before Chedoke we felt that our dreams had been lost but most devastating that our “Hope” was gone. These last ten years I have been blessed with a loving wife and two devoted sons, a fine home and even a few bucks in the bank. These ten years have been difficult on all of us but, the month at Chedoke gave us the knowledge to deal with pain and therefore our dreams and hopes are alive and well. We hope that tomorrow I won’t hurt as much. We hope that I might get strong enough to go to work, even if for just a few hours a day. We hope that I will feel well on our Anniversary. We hope that one day there will be a cure to stop my pain. Chedoke gave us back HOPE and you can’t get any better than that.
Too often, the best part of my day is closing my eyes at night. I always ask God for a better day tomorrow and thank him for getting me through today. Chronic pain has been a part of me for fourteen years. If my pain gets out of control and I am no longer able to cope all I have to do is call.
Paul Cardoulis, July 2008