Tonight I read a really interesting blog post over on the Dear Thyroid website. Chronic Snarkopolist: ME TOO! When I am understood, I am healed. This post really got me thinking. Not very many people really know the true me. Most people only see the side of me that I let them see.
After reading that post, I really wanted to post about the true me. The me who cries herself to sleep knowing that I will never be able to do many things again because of my illnesses. The me who cries herself to sleep knowing that I can’t allow myself to get into a serious relationship with a man because it would never be fair to him. I gave up looking for a relationship several years ago because my health kept declining. I finally came to the realization that it would never be fair to put someone through having to care for me as much as I need.
Most people still see me as extremely independant. They don’t see the scared person who lives in fear of what tomorrow will hold. I don’t know if tomorrow will bring more seizures or more heart problems. I don’t know if tomorrow I will wake up with energy and feel decent or wake up so lethargic that I have issues just sitting up in bed.
I hide behind my jokes. I hide behind my intellect. I don’t let people see the emotional turmoil that I am constantly in. I often think back to “the good old days” because I wasn’t as sick then. I had hopes and dreams back then. My life had a chance. Now my only hope is that I will face the next day feeling ok.
At one point, my mom (who also had a chronic illness) and I were each others support system. We were there to help each other through the rough days. Very few people knew, but we would cry on each others shoulders. Both my mom and I have always had a tough time showing our emotions to others. We have both been very closed and have only had a handful of friends. Unfortunately, my mom passed away and I lost my support system.
These past few years, I have closed myself off further and further from everyone. Even the person who I had called my supposed best friend for over 10 years hasn’t talked to me in ages except through occasional posts on Facebook. The only people I really have any contact with are my coworkers, patients, and those few people that I talk to in my guild in Everquest 2. And even then, I haven’t been talking as much as I used to.
There are so many symptoms that are associated with my various illnesses that it takes too much to list them. They are both physical and emotional. Unfortunately, if I try to explain what is going on with me and why, most people think I am just making excuses for my behavior. Thats not true. I don’t want to act like I do sometimes. I just can’t help myself. Heck, even Dr. Datis Kharazian has the exact things listed in his book that I do and people accuse me of. I don’t want to be socially inept. I don’t want to cause any type of conflict. Sometimes I just am or I just do. Its not something I can control. I often think its best for me not to have contact with others. I find myself having issues dealing with people. I get stressed when having to deal with too many people at one time.
I hate when the waiting room is full and everyone is talking. I literally start having panic attacks. I can’t handle it. I feel as if the entire room starts to spin and the walls are closing in on me. However, the waiting room can be full of quiet people and I don’t have that happen to me. I don’t know why it happens when everyone is talking. I wish I could explain it.
Many times I imagine people are upset with me even though they say that they aren’t. I don’t know why I feel that way, but I do. I have dreams that people hate me and then for some reason, when I wake up I feel like they really do. I know it was just a dream, but sometimes I can’t shake the feeling of them hating me.
I would love to blame my depression on my illnesses, but I was suffering from depression way before my illnesses. So even though my doctors say they are related (and yes, depression is one of the symptoms of my autoimmune disease), I have had it much longer. I remember when I was 21 that one of my exboyfriends had taken me to get some counseling because I was having suicidal thoughts. And unfortunately I have had suicidal thoughts many times over the years. However, because of seeing attempted suicides that have gone wrong while working at the hospital, I would never attempt it. I am more afraid of what would happen if I failed then if I succeeded.
In fact, one of my biggest fears in life is the fear of failure. So many times I have given up on things because I was afraid to fail at it instead of really trying. Its a hundred times easier to know that I didn’t make it because I chose to give up then to think that I didn’t make it because I failed at it. I know its held me back on many things throughout life.
One thing that I would love is to really try my hand at writing stories and attempting to get published. However, I am still too afraid to try. I am afraid of rejection. I have always loved to write. I have tons of stories floating around in my head. Some have been written up, but never have I sent anything in to a publisher.
Fear and depression can become debilitating.
Well, I am sure that there is still many more layers to me to share. However, that is all I am capable of emotionally sharing right now.
How many people will actually read this? Probably very few if any. And that is a sad fact.