I look out for a good pain story to help people understand their pain. Here is one from Dave Grohl from the Foo Fighters
I was watching the Foo Fighters in the car with James Corden, singing their songs, cruising in the LA sunshine and having a great time. It is infectious.
A few years ago, Dave Grohl broke his leg during a show.
“It kind of sucked a little, although it didn’t hurt when it happened….”, he says on being asked by Corden. “I had adrenaline in me, a stadium full of people….”.
Instinctively, we often know that pain and injury are not well related. Put simply, this is because pain is a perception (watch this TED talk by Dr Mick Thacker) and not a sensation. Despite damage and the activation of systems and processes designed to protect, our conscious experiences vary hugely.
This speaks of the uniqueness of each person. We all have a story that is ours alone together with the context of any given situation.
Pain is inferred: the best explanation of the possible causes of the sensory information. The brain crunches a mass of data, trying to make sense of it all based on what we know about the world.
There are innumerable variables, which is probably why pain perception varies so much from person to person and within the same person.
Having jumped off a festival stage, some 12 feet high, in response to tripping.
“I landed and immediately got up….but there was nothing there”.
We respond to people’s stories. Look at the image and see how Corden is empathising and ‘living’ Dave’s experience in his own way. Meanwhile, Dave is also reliving what happened in his way and the guys in the back theirs.
“It was only the second song in the set and I felt so bad that all those people had come and seen two songs”. Nicest man in rock.
“I’ll go and fix this and then I’ll be back”, Grohl told the crowd.
The ankle had to be relocated on the side of the stage, but the leg was also broken.
“Can I go and finish the show?”, he asked.
“I have to hold your ankle in place”, replied the medic.
“Well then you gotta come on stage”, said Grohl. “It was the best show we’ve ever had”.
Needless to say, the band finished the show.
Do you have a pain story to share that helps us understand?