Unseen Illness


Sitting yet in another waiting room…This one is full.  I am at the hospital lab for blood tests and an electrocardiogram.  Its been two weeks since I start the new increase in the pills.  So now I get the test results back in 6 weeks when I  see my doctor.  Try this, try that, but to be honest as I sit here with 25 other people waiting my turn, I wonder why we didn’t do this two years ago?? Through all this trial and error, this is the first time I have had blood work done.  You would have thought I would have had it done first.  Now I have it because the increase in the dose of drugs has side effects that can affect my heart ( somedays I feel like I am jumping from the pot to the fire).  I should be here for another 35 minutes before I see a nurse to take my blood and ekg.  I have already been here for 10 minutes.  I had to fast this morning, and that means no coffee..I love my morning coffee. A unstable person waiting in office for 40 minutes, no coffee – who knows what could happen!! (a little stab at humor)  The lady taking the paperwork looks like if she smiles her face would crack.  I can tell from watching her (and Lord knows I have time to watch) she does not like her job, or does she not like people.  I feel like saying hey dear you have a job be happy, maybe she is suffering like me – and in that case I wouldn’t like dealing with all these people too.

I am feeling a little better today.  I shut my phone off  Monday night I didn’t want to talk to anyone. Tuesday was better, I slept last night – took sleeping pills — it isn’t a solid refreshing sleep but it was sleep and that makes things better.  I will not be taking them tonight – I don’t take them two days in a row. 

I sent my Mother an email asking for forgiveness for not staying on Sunday for supper.  I really didn’t want to be around people.  I told her we had things to do and couldn’t be there and I was so sorry for it.  She emailed me back and told me if I get off the fast track I am living on and take some family time I would be less stressed.  She also said I need to grab these moments to spend time with family cause the time will come where there will be no more moments.  I agree with her on the Moments argument, but you can’t do it all and that is why I came home we had other responsibilities and couldn’t be there.  She thinks I am living life to fast and thus my mental instability.  If  I had a broken leg I would get more leeway in my decisions to do or not do stuff, but this unseen illness is disrespected as “all in your head” (which it is) but I say ‘in your head’ with all the sarcasm I can create, because that is how people who don’t understand or people give it no respect, respond. 

A lady I know was diagnosed with Cancer 10 years ago.  It was not terminal and it was self-contained so there was no drug therapy needed, just an operation to remove it and that was it. I asked her when it was all said and done, what was the one thing that drove her nuts about the whole process.  She said that the one thing that surprised her the most and bugged her was that everyone who found out she had cancer treated her like she was dead.  People thought “well  cancer kills so she will be gone soon, what a shame”.   Some people, who know I have major depression, talk to me like I am two, or in a way that will “not upset me” cause they again don’t understand.   Or every time they see me it’s like –“So how are you doing” with eyes that express pity mixed with a bit horror at the prospect of me flipping out and grabbing a sharp object and killing myself on the spot.  At work I confided in a fellow christian who has been feeling guilty having to give up some committees she was on at church cause she can’t handle it ALL anymore, as she deals with her menopause.  Everyday at least twice a day she asks me “So how Are you doing?”   The devil in me wants to say – “well not good I am going out at lunch and jumping in front of a bus”  That does happen, its nothing to joke about, suicide is a very serious thing.  The reason I bring this up at all is that this Illness and it unlike cancer or any other disease effects your whole life, and people don’t take it seriously.  

In my Mother’s case – “you are involved in too much and you have to get off the fast track life and relax then I won’t need to be on medication and you can get a grip of your life. ” In her case when she faced menopause,  she just decided that she was just going to be happy and that was that!  Other people see it as PMS gone crazy, “oh its just one of those moods” go play guitar and distract yourself it will be fine” .” Go for a run”, “just suck it up buttercup.”   Or “oh she is angry and moody she must hate me!  What is with her? ”  (sister-in-law’s response to a really down weekend I was having)  Or “wow she is a little crazy  and acting weird, just stay away from her”   If I had cancer they would just think I was going to die and leave me alone.  With depression people disregard you, try to ‘save’ you, or pity you.  It’s enough to make you depressed !! (joke)

So as I go through the process of doctor apt’s, blood tests, dealing with life, family, kids, husbands, in-laws, work and trying to hold it together you have this back lash of how people expect you to be and when you don’t measure up they criticise you.  Their expectations are to be witty and funny and bubbly like always.  I can not do it.

 

till next time……………..

 

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