She had not even opened her eyes yet and already felt the throbbing headache was still there. Another day of pain accompanied by another day of her own personal journey through Dante’s inferno. Another day of languishing in and out of thoughts of why me and maybe if she could manage the strength, a brief thought of a better tomorrow. Leaning across to the nightstand side of the bed without opening her eyes she felt for the lukewarm glass of water at her bedside before slowly wrapping her fingers around the glass and moving it to her lips. Time, noises, memories, thoughts, feelings, wants and desires are all part of the pain she thought; while slowly swallowing. She had no life separate. No promise of individuality anymore and the mere promise of relief, albeit a faint one provided by medication to cover up that tension and  disorder inside her head seemed like a pipe dream. The pain was now getting up and just one step ahead of her. It would dress, eat, determine tone and with a certain bitterness and cynic accuracy form most of her responses for the next several hours before disappearing late in the day unexpectedly. Laying back into the bed and pushing herself into a poor attempt at numbness she thought of work friends that had all faded away into the pain. Sure some old ones still occasionally checked in, but even for those who knew her before the pain there was an understanding any friendship was doomed to it, her life. Pain would always trump their feelings and concerns. Pain would always be the gatekeeper of conversations, memories and interests. And so it was as she sat up on the edge of the bed, her feet barely touching the floor; and so it was.