Funny, there’s no “self help” book for chronic conditions.
Hell, we could all probably write a very different book with what we discovered on our own that helped us.
The first time my doctor said “chronic” I didn’t understand it.
I understand it now, but I wish I didn’t.
But with chronic, there’s a lot of other things that don’t get explained when we’re presented with that diagnosis.
No one told me that I’d spend the rest of my life not just fighting for my life, but fighting to simply be last.
That checkmark on the disabled box, puts me last.
That letter I hand my professors explaining the accommodations they have to adhere to, puts me last.
And so… the list goes on.
It doesn’t matter if I get straight A’s or if I’m top performer at work, I still will never show up everyday.
I’ll never have a perfect month where I didn’t have to leave early, or spend half of my day getting sick hiding out in the bathroom.
I’ll never not have to explain some medical contingency or surprise hospitalizations.
I’ll never have a good track record. One month, my refill request doesn’t get processed correctly. The next, I’m not responding well to a new treatment. The next the seasons are changing so the weather has me out for the count. God forbid I get a sinus infection. Or get upset. Can’t cry or I’m done for 2 days,
There’s this really ugly side that goes a lot further than talking about what migraine is and educating everyone and anyone.
Its the side that grows really slowly. Its that side that pushes on the depression that is common alongside chronic conditions. Its those dark thoughts in the back of your mind that usually stay buried, but some days they just won’t go away.
Its these little parts of life that I physically can no longer picture.
Yeah, I’ve got a savings account. Yeah, I contribute to my 401K.
But like, retirement?
40 years from now, I’ll be 60.
I see posts all the time about people who talk about having migraines for over 40 years.
I can’t actually spending an entire lifetime in this pain.
I know I will, but a life like this? There really isn’t much to picture.
Who knows, menopause may be a godsend and I’ll never have pain after that.
I won’t even get into how screwed my body will be from all these treatments…
And then I open Facebook. 2 more people are pregnant and another is engaged and others are celebrating anniversaries and taking fancy vacations.
No, I don’t want kids. Never have. Couldn’t imagine bringing one into this world and definitely wouldn’t want to pass this condition down.
It would be nice to be able to picture settling down one day with someone I loved.
But, now that guy would have to not want kids.
And he’d be signing up for a lifetime of being a caregiver.
How do you put that burden onto someone? You don’t.
And its not like guys hang out in doctors office’s or therapy places trying to pick up a date.
I can’t even go on a date.
I have a hard enough time agreeing to dinner with the few friends I have left.
You see. Its just this endless spiraling cycle.
It goes past the pain.
That’s all there is to it.
Some days its just bleak.
Some days it doesn’t make sense.
It may feels like I got handed the short end of the stick, but the stick packs a punch nonetheless.
So here’s to fighting to just come in last.