January 19, 2014

Beauty for Ashes

     Permanent flu. A never ending marathon. To insomnia with eventual pointless sleep.
     Now that it has been part of me for so long, I've realized how I could get the point across.
     Not only have been living with it,  I have been battling it. The only thing I can think to compare it to is living with an abusive, controlling and unpredictable partner. 
    He tells me what I can spend my day doing.
    He makes me cancel appointments and avoid events.
    He decides whether I can clean my house or go to church.   
    He gives me false hope; lets me think I can achieve an unprecedented step forward, that I will get help, get an answer; then pulls me back down to his level.
    He tells me what I can eat or drink. 
    He's indecisive, sometimes allowing me do something, then changing his mind halfway through it.
     He plays tricks on me and punishes me when I read his mood, incorrectly.
    He makes me feel sick in the same day that he lets me be happy.
    He controls how well I sleep, if at all.
    He makes me weak inside, when I know I'm strong.
    He makes me feel pain for no reason.
    He makes me feel afraid of what will happen if I defy him.
    He knows I dream of leaving him and reminds me that I'm foolish for considering the possibility. 
    But what I don't let him know, is that one day, I will be free of him and that his power over me will diminish. 

We appear capable and healthy, but inside we're physically and emotionally exhausted. Remember, the next time you see a sufferer, that in energy terms, we may have just climbed a mountain. But, all we have done is sit down next to you and smiled. 

It fools the body into thinking it has run a marathon, built a house, gone a week without sleep, but all it has done is go to town for groceries. When a sufferer tells you that they are tired, they sometimes mean they are so exhausted that they could weep. But it is a trickster that sleep won't stop.

So please, when you see a sufferer, friend; remember, they are fighting a constant battle with their oppressor. If you can't imagine it, don't try. Just support them. They need it. 

In the words of a fellow sufferer,
    Paula Comeaux

[I wrote this in 2008. I, only, recently came across it in some of my old writing. To read this and know where I was at, physically, emotionally and spiritually, when this was written... I have come far. I have loosened the chains that held me in more ways than I could explain here. One day, I hope to share that. For now, I hope to share hope and understanding. If you deal with the effects of chronic illness, especially illness that is not, immediately, obvious to the others, my hope is with you]

This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.
-Dalai Lama