October 21, 2018

42 and 25

October is a strange month in my life. Last week I turned 42 years old and the week before that marked 25 years since my constant headache started and I became chronically ill. I remember brief clips from that time: crying in pain while waiting for my mom to get home from work; listening to my mom unenrolling me from my community college class with tangled feelings of relief and failure; a kind nurse holding my sweaty hand while the doctor performed a lumbar puncture; thinking that surely I'd be better by Thanksgiving, by New Year's, by Senior year. I turned to hand work and old movies, which is when I started quilting and taught myself to knit. An inpatient headache clinic decreased and stabilized the pain enough that I could attend college part time with my friends.

I've been trying to write a second paragraph for days but can't find the right thing to say. As the autoimmune cognitive disfunction worsens it gets harder and harder for me to put thoughts into words. I've made the best life I can given the constraints and difficulties. Pain and illness have changed me in fundamental ways and have pushed me outside the mainstream. I don't have the career or romantic partnership that I assumed I would, nor do I have relatable experiences or anything resembling a normal life. But I'm usually happy and probably enjoy life more than the average person. Above all I try to love others and be kind.

Right now I'm going to be kind to myself and take a nap.

 I climbed a view tower yesterday in memory of an arthritis friend who passed away recently.

1 comment:

  1. I’m sorry for the loss of your friend and appreciate your thoughts about life with a chronic illness. It resonates with me. Deeply.


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