“I am sick.”
“You know I’m sick.”
“You’ve heard what the doctors and Google have to say.”
“Remember? Do you remember that I have a disease… an autoimmune disease?”
“No, it’s not cancer. It’s not a heart attack. I’m not dying… but I am sick!”
“I can’t help but feel utterly exhausted, overwhelmed, out of sorts, dizzy, achy, off, cranky, and just plain not right.”
“Corticosteroids… remember, we talked about what they do and how they affect people?”
“I don’t feel like ME! Do you understand that?”
“Going out… going out anywhere, to do most anything… is stressful at best and I find it quite mind-boggling! It freaks me out and causes me anxiety.”
“So please… can you please explain to me… why…. if you love me, if you’re my friend… why you insist on dragging me around and parading me through endless hours of non-stop activity?”
This is the pseudo conversation that goes on in my head, when a fellow PMR/GCA sufferer mentions that s/he was coerced or bullied into an outing or family gathering that they either did not want to go to, or were trapped into staying at, much longer than they ever intended to stay!
This must stop. We must become better advocates, for ourselves!
We must be more comfortable standing up for ourselves and in telling our loved ones and friends what we want and need, when we want and need it!
We must stop internally (and externally!) apologising for being sick!
We didn’t ask for this! We didn’t choose to have our lives turned up side down by this bullshit! It was thrust upon us… like cancer, like Alzheimer’s, like schizophrenia… or any of the countless other debilitating diseases that strike people down in the prime of their lives!
I’ve never heard a cancer patient apologise for being tired or for having cancer! And I’ve spent a lot of time around cancer patients!
Are we secretly embarrassed or ashamed by the fact that we’re sick?
Are we pushing ourselves in a futile attempt to “appear” normal?
Why are we allowing ourselves to be victims to the wants and needs of our friends and family at the expense of our own wellbeing?
Well, I say, “No more Mr Nice Guy!”
It’s time for us to be vigilant and listen more carefully to our negative (and often un-constructive) “self talk.” And… it’s time that we changed that dialog!
No more thinking to ourselves; “Oh, I guess I should make an effort for Johnny… he’s so good to me.” “I don’t really feel well, but I didn’t go last time, so…” “I guess I could stay just a little longer…”
Having a weird, obscure, freaky disease should not make us feel “less than,” or inadequate.
We do not have to “make up” for any wrongly perceived imperfection or deficiency.
We are just as “good,” as all those healthy people!
Who are we trying to impress, anyway… them, or ourselves?
Are we subconsciously trying to get our “old” selves back? Do we think that by pretending to be normal, or stronger than we are, or more capable, that we can somehow resurrect that healthy, vivacious, fun, person that we used to be?
Well, we can’t!
Please know that s/he is gone! That person no longer exists! Hopefully we’ll meet them again one day (or at least an older, wiser, version of them), but for now, they’re gone.
Why do we allow ourselves to be swayed by the wants and needs of others, when we know it is not in our best interest and it negatively impacts our health and wellbeing?
I’m not freakin Sigmund Freud, I have no answers… but the questions still stands.
“Whatever games are played with us, we must play no games with ourselves.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson