Saturday, August 7, 2010

Chronic Illness Patients - I Salute You

So I started this morning with a nosebleed, dry heaves, and a right leg with incredible pain.

Then I went to the psychiatrist, who determined that I have hypersomnia - which I already knew in a way.  I was prescribed Modafinil so hopefully it will be able to channel my thoughts into some sort of productive manner.

What really got me though was how hard he was pushing on me.  He concluded that if I had the ability to write this blog every day, I obviously have the ability to channel my illness away and be productive.  As a result, he believes I should be able to do this with my entire life.

He asked what I would do if I was sick like this for my entire life.  I told him I had already taken that to be the case, and the best thing I can do is just to get up and keep trying each morning.  Sometimes I feel like the sick fall into this category of simply being the people who can't push hard enough to overcome their symptoms.

I don't believe this to be true.

I believe anyone who is in this circumstance is a fighter.
They don't kill themselves.
They don't move into constant feelings of self-pity.
They try, even if it is only slight movements a day.

I respect each and every chronic pain and illness fighter out there.  Today, and every day, I have you all in my heart.

So much love,


Anonymous said...

WOW, if only it was as easy as channeling away my illnesses. Good grief. Your the second person today with a post similar to this with a doctor making a naked assumption. I swear if an MD can't cure it a shrink wants to say it's not there.

You keep showing up every day on your blog because, even if only for a moment, you might be able to channel something. Hugs to you. Tazzy

What the Fog said...

I think your psychiatrist is a f#@*tard. I suppose he does not realize that it may take you All Day to write the post. You may be tilted sideways with an ice pack on one body part and a heating pad on another. Tears running down your face and not enough Kleenex to catch it all. I'm sorry he was so insensitive. I hope that one day he can understand that people with chronic illnesses are way stronger than he will ever be. His life is pretty effortless in comparison. At least you know the difference even if he doesn't. Thank you for the great post. Patti

marja said...

Oh God, I hate it when people say, "if you just tried a little harder...", as if we WANTED to be sick?

If you're anything like me, you definitely don't!

If someone has cancer, people take them seriously... it is a known, and horrid entity. People recognize the seriousness of it.

If a person is an amputee, others see that, and usually give that person extra consideration.

If, however, you are like us and have a serious yet invisible disease, all of a sudden you are expected to just "Get over it" or "try harder".

No, I'm not just being lazy. I don't want to be like this!! I want to be out DOING, ACCOMPLISHING, and LIVING. Instead, every little thing I do has a cost. Should I do the laundry, or make supper? I don't have energy to do both...

Thanks for writing this blog, and sharing. I wouldn't wish my type of illness on anyone, but simply knowing there are others out there with similar conditions is... comforting. So, thanks for all the hard work you've put into it. *hugs*

Sorry you had such a hard time with the psychiatrist...

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

Hear you, validate you and endorse all that has been said in the three responses above mine. It's a battle nearly every day that we will just have to continue to fight. I am a believer in better living through chemistry.

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

As an aside, I am proud to be your 100th follower.

Leanne said...

I am sooo greatful our dd has only once met one medical person with this attitude.

We have been soo blessed with the right medical support. Even her employers have been supportive.

Hope you can change dr's etc - but that takes soo much effort.

Love Leanne

upnorth said...

Well said Annie,
Us Chronically Ill are tough! rather than people who just can't push through...

Toni said...

I'm agreeing with everything that's been posted here. It's a battle everyday. And to say that because you can write the blog, you can do all these other things is just not true. I wrote that book and I am so sick today, I'm only looking at your blog because I love it so much. Otherwise, I'm in a darkened room today.

We fight everyday. We're battlers. No one should diminish us.

Love to you, Annie, for always putting into words what we need to hear to help us get through the day.

Anonymous said...

It is the worst, most narrow-minded, ignorant, callous, egocentric, and unintelligent thing for a doctor to treat chronically ill people like they just don't try hard enough. No one has any right to judge something that they have not experienced. You and many others that suffer should be honored for what you withstand and even triumph. This blog is a perfect example of just that!

Carly Findlay said...

Sometimes I've thought if I can live an extremely full life with a chronic illness, others can too. But I've gotten to know more people with chronic illnesses and realised this won't be the case, and perhaps my expectations of others are too high. I do believe that when I have a full life, I am at my happiest and best health though.
Just do things at your own pace - don't let others judge you.
Kind wishes.

Forgetful Girl said...

You are such an inspiration! That psychiatrist sounds like he hasn't a clue. Did you ask him what he would do in your situation?

By blogging you are helping yourself, how does he not see that? It shows you want to do something in life- like the most of us- but are stuck in a sort of limbo where we get judged by everything we do.

I hope today is a better day for you!

Laurel said...

"I believe anyone who is in this circumstance is a fighter.
They don't kill themselves.
They don't move into constant feelings of self-pity.
They try, even if it is only slight movements a day."

Much agreed! Your psychiatrist sounds like a dweeb. It was advice like that -- that I just needed to push harder -- that caused me to go from being moderately ill with ME/CFS and still able to work, to fully bedbound. Listen to your body, not your psychiatrist. :)

Hugs to you!!

KD said...

That psychiatrist is a twit-brain.

Gerri said...

You've put into words how I feel and try to explain to someone and the disappointment when I can't do something -

Sometimes I feel like the sick fall into this category of simply being the people who can't push hard enough to overcome their symptoms.

I think I might have to save this to show to people that don't understand.

Thanks, Gerri

Annie said...

Thank you all for your wonderful responses to this piece! I think I hit a nerve with my beloved chronic illness friends! xoxo