My Illness Anniversary

(image from weheartit.com)

February 15, 2000.

That is the day chronic illness joined me on my journey in this thing we call life.  10 years of living in limbo, 5 years of being undiagnosed, gains and losses, fears and joys, anger and acceptance.

Two days ago was the anniversary of me originally getting sick at work.  10 years can be a big anniversary depending on the reason.  Anniversaries are usually filled with joy and celebration.  You would think that having a chronic illness would not bring opportunities for joy and celebration but that would be wrong.  You do learn to celebrate the little and big victories along the way.  You learn to appreciate the joy in things undiscovered or rediscovered.

I wanted to acknowledge the anniversary but I really wasn’t sure what kind of post I’d be doing.  There is so many negative things that happen when you become ill it’s very easy to fall back on that.  I read a venting post recently and thought that would be great for the anniversary.   It will be right in the middle of winter and if I’m feeling sad or being situationally depressed, which is my depression diagnosis, it would be a great time to vent.   But, I’m doing OK right now.  I may do a venting post one day.  I’m sure there will be a time when I will want to do it but, now is not the time.

I think there is a combination of things as to why I’m not in the mood to write something and it boils down to me realizing that I’m at peace with having a chronic illness .  I’ve accepted that my disability is not going away and I’ve come to peace with that knowledge.   I’m more comfortable with it, dealing with it, knowing the different tricks to reduce as much as possible the dizziness and that unbalanced-but-really-I’m-not-drunk walk.   Having less stress because I’m not waging war against the illness anymore.  Having less stress because I was able to get on disability.  Having other people around me dealing with their own health problems and being able to talk, learn and vent about what we’re going through and knowing that I’m not alone.  There are many “have-nots” while dealing with a chronic illness but, as you can see, there are many “haves” as well.

As I wrote earlier, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write.  It has been 10 years.  Surely I could come up with something.  But, for now, this seems about it.  I certainly wish things were better in many regards for me, and for all of us dealing with chronic illness.  However,  we don’t get to wave a magic wand to wave around and suddenly POOF!, we’re better.

What we do get, by doing such things as reading other blogs, is realizing that we are not alone, others know some of the different things that we are feeling and going through and that we can learn from their experiences as well.  And that knowledge may be one of the best gifts those of us with chronic illness can receive.

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2 comments

  1. Happy Anniversary. Well, you know what I mean.
    I’m glad you have come to terms with things. I’m finally doing that myself. It’s hard, but it’s worth it.

    I receive so much from reading other people’s blogs, and from writing mine. It has been so cathartic.

    (by the way, I love that you are a Neil Gaiman fan! He is one of my favorite writers, and from reading his blog, I think he’d be one of my favorite people too….like you.)

    1. I love Neil Gaiman, at least as a writer! He’s been my favourite writer for a few years now. I think it would be great to meet him…and his new wife. If you haven’t done it yet, I would highly suggest listening to him read The Graveyard Book. He’s put the video tour on his site when the book came out and for the most part it’s each chapter per video, although I think one chapter gets split in two. As good as he is as a writer, he is just as good as a reader of this book (that and he’s got that accent).

      Now, this meeting people we “meet” on the web is definitely why we need the magic wand I talked about. That or a transporter like in Star Trek! We could all meet up, talk, blab, vent, fix our health and all the world’s problems…it would be great.

      Oh, well. A girl can dream.

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