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Chronic pain: ‘I had to grieve what I’d lost to build my life back up again’

With no end in sight, chronic pain has a massive impact on your life and emotional wellbeing. Tricia O’Shea and Rosie Farrell share how they learned to live alongside their symptoms and the importance of remembering that you are not alone

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Tricia O'Shea, who is living with chronic pain, pictured near her home at Aghadoe, Killarney. Photo: Don MacMonagle

Tricia O'Shea, who is living with chronic pain, pictured near her home at Aghadoe, Killarney. Photo: Don MacMonagle

Rosie Farrell, who suffers from chronic pain, near her home in Riverstown, Co Sligo. Photo: James Connolly

Rosie Farrell, who suffers from chronic pain, near her home in Riverstown, Co Sligo. Photo: James Connolly

Tricia O’Shea is living with chronic pain after being injured in a car accident in 2010. Photo: Don MacMonagle

Tricia O’Shea is living with chronic pain after being injured in a car accident in 2010. Photo: Don MacMonagle

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Tricia O'Shea, who is living with chronic pain, pictured near her home at Aghadoe, Killarney. Photo: Don MacMonagle

Living with chronic pain means that every aspect of 58-year-old Tricia O’Shea’s life has changed utterly. But she’s determined to let other sufferers know that while her life looks a lot different to what it once did, it’s a life full of new purpose.

It was April 2010 and Tricia was working as a PE teacher, based at a number of different primary schools in Co Kerry. An accident on her way home from work one afternoon left her with injuries to her lower back and pelvic area, which resulted in the onset of chronic pain. It put an end not only to the teaching career she loved but also to her passion for exercise and the great outdoors.


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