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We Are Alive Too!

Autoimmune Diseases

To the people that do not understand. When a person is suffering from a condition such as an autoimmune disorder, it is easy to label them as lazy. Laziness is defined as; disinclined to activity or exertion: not energetic or vigorous. Well as you can see this would be the correct label except we are not disinclined, we want to go places and have fun and even go to work on a regular basis (for those who can not). Basically, we are stuck in a body that refuses to work, all your energy is put into moving your body and not at a pace that is considered anywhere near fast. Morning activities wear you down, believe it or not, for a man or woman that has one of the many autoimmune disorders out there, just taking a shower can make you fatigued and uncoordinated. Simple tasks like laundry, dishes, walking the dog, and making a bed sometimes seem like you are Sisyphus, always pushing that boulder up hill and never making progress, but instead of being bound to hell, we are bound to a broken body. 

You have to plan out what you are going to do all the time, that way you know what you are putting your energy into, and that it will be productive enough to actually get things done. We get easily frustrated because we know that we are capable of doing all the things that we want to do, however we are restricted to tired, shaky, non-compliant muscles, and even your brain doesn't want to help either, it takes on its own identity. You become foggy, and forgetful, you try to feel your way through the haze but that takes time, and as we all know time is not always on our side. Doctors try their best to help ease symptoms or actually treat you properly, however every autoimmune disease is different, and are very difficult to completely treat.  Employers after a while decide that you are not a good fit because you miss to many days and medical leave isn't an option in some cases. Friends decide to stop asking you to do things because they know you will say no, sometimes family members think that you are just faking for the attention (this one is exceptionally frustrating). All the while we sit at home and think about all these things, and that can cause depression and anxiety, so you go on medication for those on top of the other medicine you are already taking. You feel alone, misunderstood, and useless. 

We really want to spend time with people but we stop reaching out because we don't want to bother anyone, we don't want have to make our friends inactive just for us. All we seek is understanding and support, someone to say "hey, let's hang out for a little while, have a coffee." We are not cognitively challenged, we still have the intelligence we had when you met us, most of us enjoy board games, cards, watching movies, and listening to music over a glass of wine. If you are a person that does not have health issues, but you know someone that does, maybe take a moment and ask that person how they are doing, you may not realize it but you may be the only person that speaks to them that day, week, or even month. Doing this helps that person makes them feel like they are important and maybe even needed. Being part of a support system makes a big difference in the lives of people suffering with any kind of illness. So take the time to say "hey" to that friend who is tired all the time, it will make a difference. As a whole, having an autoimmune disease really stinks, but there are the good days, the ones where you can enjoy the day or days free of pain or sickness; those are the ones that we cherish. 

Emma Crane
Emma Crane

I am a person that has a lot on her mind. I am in my 30's and love that there is a platform like this where I can share my passion for writing, which is something that I have been doing since my childhood. 

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