Podcast - Pain 2 Possibilities

Becoming A Chronic Pain Warrior

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Meet Our Head Pain Coach & Chief Curator

Introducing our

Head Pain Coach and Chief Curator

Hello, I'm Deana Tsiapalis

After the sudden passing of my mother at a young age due to stress combined with many underlying health issues, some of which went completely undetected, I knew that I needed to learn more. After watching my father's health rapidly decline, his overwhelm amplify and his eventual passing only deepened my resolve to help others on their wellness journey.  

While teaching Remedial Pilates I worked many people with a similar story where the overwhelm of chronic pain left the person feeling misunderstood, stigmatized and left to their own devices.  It was time to get to work to create a unique space that is exclusively for the chronic pain community to bridge the gap between physician and the pain warrior with coaching, community and pain education. Exactly the sort of model I wished I could find when my parents needed guidance.

After studying Physical health and education, Fitness & Lifestyle Management, becoming a certified Wellness Coach, a certified Pilates instructor and then learning Pain Education from the amazing Dr.Rachel Zoffness (pain education disruptor) Pain 2 Possibilities and The Change Pain Academy were born!

Meet Barb

Welcome our Cwtch Community Leader & Co-Creator

Barb Thornton

My journey with chronic pain began in 2003.

In the early years, life centered around doctors, tests, medications, physio and surgeries. My world consisted of pain, waiting and uncertainty while raising a family and caring for an ill parent. The career I worked so hard for slipped through my fingers. Depression took hold.

To get me through, I focused with high hopes on the date of my next appointment with the next doctor who would have the answer, fix me and make the pain stop. It would build to a crescendo but before the grand finale that reveals the answers and the fix, the curtains fell and the lights went out every single time.  Sadly, my story is not unique to the chronic pain community.

It didn’t take long to realize that life with chronic pain is so much more than pain. Chronic pain invades every aspect of your life. It is isolation, frustration, depression, grief, humiliation, shame, judgement, confusion and disappointments. It steals jobs, partners, friends and finances. It quietly steals your energy, motivation and self-worth. It is pleading your case for disability income, parking passes and extra red tape when you need to borrow money. It is wanting to participate in life and having no idea how you can or who can tell you.

Chronic pain is lonely.

I remember wondering how many others were as confused, scared, lonely and overwhelmed as I was. Wondering who I could ask (that gets it) for suggestions to help make my life fuller, richer, and more in line with what I want from life. I needed purpose in my life. I needed sound advice from someone walking the same path.
And so Cwtch (pronounced kutch) was born.

I am excited to bring my passion to life as part of The Chronic Pain Academy. Cwtch is the place to connect with others who get it and to grow your life into a life you love. It is a safe place learn and even have some fun. It is by warriors for warriors. 

I will be forever grateful to Deana, Pain 2 Possibilities and The Chronic Pain Academy for her incredible work and dedication to the chronic pain community. I am excited to see Cwtch come to life and to be part of building a truly meaningful experience to those who, like me, live with chronic pain. 

Wishing you a low pain day and sending gentle hugs. Come find your Cwtch with me.

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