Opening Up About Mental Health: Rachel Guyer-Mafune on Anxiety, Depression, ADHD and Bipolar Disorder

This week on the Major Pain podcast, Seattle based performer Rachel Guyer-Mafune discusses her history with mental health challenges, including anxiety, depression, ADHD and bipolar disorder. Although she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in freshman year of college, she is only now beginning to open up about this diagnosis publicly. Read more…

Can Fibromyalgia and Fitness Coexist? An Interview with Coach Ki

After being diagnosed with fibromyalgia, Kiera (AKA Coach Ki) did some online research to see if she would be able to continue her fitness journey. She was disheartened to find several accounts of people unable to continue training with this disease. Kiera has been passionate about fitness since she was Read more…

Living with Hidradenitis Suppurativa

Joey Torre lives with hidradenitis suppurativa (HS), a painful, chronic skin condition that affects up to 2% of the population. The disease causes the formation of bumps, lesions, or boils in sweat gland areas, such as the armpits and groin. Joey also experiences extreme fatigue, which can sometimes accompany HS, Read more…

Years After Being Propped Up as a Bipolar Success Story, Genevieve Questions the Messaging She Was Directed To Share

As a senior in high school, Genevieve won an essay contest writing about the changes she’d like to see with the stigma surrounding bipolar disorder. This brought her to the attention of a foundation aimed at raising bipolar awareness, and at 19 years old she began touring with a state Read more…

Country Music Rising Star Annie Vander on Her Battle With CRPS

Annie Vander is a country music up-and-comer, who’s latest single ‘Falling into Nashville’ has been featured on the Music Row Country Breakout Chart. Just a few years ago Annie had no idea that her lifelong musical dreams were about to come true. She had built a career working with animals, Read more…

Recovering from Multiple Chemical Sensitivities Through Neural Rewiring

While working as a hairstylist, Merideth was repeatedly exposed to chemicals that released formaldehyde. Eventually her health collapsed, and she found herself unable to continue working. Doctors recommended avoiding future exposure, but this proved insufficient as Meredith’s issues with chemical sensitivity began to expand exponentially. She became chronically ill, housebound Read more…

Level 10 Pain, the Mayo Clinic, Aphasia and Sarcoidosis: Claudia’s Journey So Far

Claudia Alick is an activist and influencer with a transmedia social justice practice, creating spaces for entertainment, education and empowerment by and for marginalized communities. While working as a disability advocate in 2009, Claudia found themself suddenly experiencing what they describe as mysterious level 10 pain, accompanied by mobility issues Read more…

Fiction Writer Emma G. Rose Incorporates Chronic Illness Experience in New Novel

In her new novel On the Bank of Oblivion, author Emma G. Rose explores her own history with chronic illness through the lens of contemporary fantasy. At 16 Emma was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), now referred to as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME). It all started with a tickle in Read more…

Complex Regional Pain Disorder: My Pain is like a Petulant Child

Pris is a 4th generation circus performer and entertainer who has worked in costume design and staged weapon play. She grew up as a very physical child, filling her days with dancing, baseball, basketball and more. She was familiar with the feeling of a normal bone break, and the subsequent Read more…

Finally Diagnosed: Her Genetic Condition Hid in Plain Sight for Decades

When Ashley scheduled an interview for the Major Pain podcast to discuss her chronic illness, she was prepared to talk about living with an undiagnosed disease. But to her shock, just weeks before recording her interview, a rheumatologist officially confirmed a diagnosis. Ashley found herself looking back on her life Read more…