All of those thoughts are true: I am very grateful that I don't have a brain tumor, MS, cancer, and that I am not paralyzed. On the other hand, just because it isn't cancer doesn't mean it doesn't suck. My sister is a cancer nurse and she said this to me one day: "Many people make a full recovery from cancer and go on to live full, happy lives."
Just say the word cancer, and the casseroles and the sympathy will start piling up. Say IC, FMS, CFS, or back surgeries and people's eyes will glaze over from boredom. Trust me. In my non-blogging life, people know that I have health "issues", but they do not know the extent of it. I really try not to mention it too much or complain about it too much. But when I do voice a concern, there is nothing I hate more than someone trying to get me to see the bright side. Like, I spend all day, every day, trying to see the bright side. When I can't, I just need a little validation that there is in fact a dark side. I cannot be relentlessly upbeat.
Today on Facebook I posted something about how I wish it were summer and I was swimming in my pool. Someone posted back and said, "Well at least it's not November and you don't have the whole winter in front of you."
Uhm, first of all, no shit.
Secondly, if it was November, I wouldn't be so sick of winter.
And for the record, I wouldn't turn the clock back to November for anything. Since then, my mother's husband died, I went through a medical detox for a drug I never abused, and I have endured my daughter's two hospitalizations from drug/alcohol overdoses.
(On the bright side, I don't have cancer.)
At the end of the day, a little validation goes a long way. For example, to my Facebook post where I wished it were summer, my
See, I always end up seeing the bright side; I am an optimist.
But every once in awhile, I need to acknowledge the dark side.
Chronic illness isn't pretty. It is painful and sad and well, boring. And exhausting.
I am exhausted.
(At least, I have a warm bed to sleep in.)