Have you ever watched a child play with a jack-in-the-box? You see them slowly wind the handle. As the music plays they begin to giggle in anticipation of the clown that is about to appear, and then suddenly…POP! The child has a look of surprise as if they didn’t know it was coming. They wind again, and the same result happens, shock and surprise. I believe living with a chronic disease is a similar constant surprise. I have learned once you have one autoimmune disorder, it is not uncommon to get a second, third or even tenth! Each time I step into the Rheumatologist office I am confident that all is going to work out and be okay, then…POP! I have a look of shock and surprise. There is a new medical hurdle to be jumped.
It seems to be a never ending cycle. The chaos becomes almost comforting. What about when the box doesn’t open? You get to that moment of silence, which in my world becomes a very uneasy feeling. I have gotten so used to that “pop” feeling that as odd as it sounds, the calm becomes the scary. But is that any way to really live? You want desperately to be healed, but know this is no time for desperation. You must move forward and keep positive. So how do we keep that positive head on our shoulders when it seems our health is always dwindling? My answer…very carefully. I have learned that I must approach each day as a new one. I cannot bring the pain from yesterday to today. If it comes on its own so be it, but I will not be its crutch. I have learned the more stressed out I get about something the worse and faster my next flare will come. I will strive for the days when I can head to the gym and run errands and still be able to get some restful sleep that night. I cannot say I will ever get used to the news when it pops out, but I will be brave enough to face it each time.
Below is a list of some of my surprises. I have only included a few of the bigger ones. What is one, or some, of yours? How do you deal with the shock of the pop?
- Born without the main vein to my heart (Inferior Vena Cava)
- Born without hip sockets
- Born with slight spina bifeda
- Malrotation of the bowel at age 5
- Kidney removal at age 11
- Epilepsy at age 18
- Edometriosis at age 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 – hysterectomy to solve the ongoing problem at 30
- Ankylosing Spondylitis at age 31
The informational content of this article is intended to convey general educational
information and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.
This article is intended to convey general educational information and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.