I feel crazy.
The kind of crazy that when you tell people what you think may be wrong with you, the more they look at you like you just grew an extra head.
It’s not a fun place.
I’ve been to countless doctors over the last few years that have suggested that things are “in my head” or that my situation isn’t as bad as it is. One doctor had the nerve to tell me, “Your lab results don’t show any abnormalities. Perhaps you have are just lazy and lack motivation now that you are a mother.” Really? I have to stand for that type of mental and verbal abuse. Doctors, among other people who should have genuine concern for your wellbeing, are supposed to listen to you.
I’m not a hypochondriac.
I’m trapped. Trapped in a body that no longer works like it used to. Trapped in a human cage that takes 20 (yes, I have counted them) pills to work on only a few cylinders, each day.
I run on autopilot. I know what I have to do each day, thanks to numerous lists that cloud my kitchen counters and my purse, and I do everything I can to get it done – no matter how tired I am.
Some evenings, I am too tired to stand at my kitchen stove to cook dinner, but I do it anyway. Some days I call my mother two or three times in a row to tell her the same exact information that I just spoke with her about because I can’t remember that I called her only seconds earlier. I miss out on some of the joy that my life brings because my thinking is so clouded that sometimes, the simplest things just don’t make sense to me. I walk around the grocery store almost floating, feeling like I can’t connect fully with people greeting me.
I am sick, although it’s hard to tell just by looking at me.
I often sit and ponder what I used to be able to do in the past. Just a few short years ago, I was teaching, and taking, 3-4 aerobics classes per day and running a small online business by night. I was organized. I had energy. I had a zest for life. I loved responsibility and often volunteered for more than I could handle.
I was fun.
Now, I’m not.
What used to be a very social girl, has turned into someone who shies away from social events. The thought of meeting someone new and having them “discover” my health secret scares me. What will they think? I’m not who I used to be – will they like me? Will they want to be my friend?
Often, I don’t remember people or events that took place a few years back. I often feel like I offend people because I don’t know their name, or I don’t remember ever having dinner with them. It’s embarrassing and heartbreaking.
If you know someone like this, or maybe the person that you know is me, don’t judge them for what they can’t control. Give compassion without feeling sorry for them.
Love them. They need you and they need your help more than you will ever know.