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Is your battle my battle?

I agree. Fatigue is a big part of this post. I’m tired. I’m emotional not hormonal. I’m grateful for what I have, but feel short-changed. I feel guilty for feeling that way.

I read about a lady battling to get her husband the support he needs to live with his mental health problems. He’s homeless because he can’t be around his kids, he is being over-looked by an over-whelmed healthcare system. His kids know he’s homeless but don’t understand why he isn’t being helped. He doesn’t tick the right boxes so he isn’t a priority. He is deteriorating on a daily basis, his wife is desperate to help him but is being blocked at every turn. Yet, she keeps fighting. She fights every day.

People like her give me hope for a future that I struggle to see. She’s doing it for her kids. She’s doing it for her husband. The side effect of that, is that she is doing it for me and for you too. What society as a whole, I think, tends to forget, is that we are are ALL a single, unexpected event away from the situation this lady finds herself in. She didn’t marry a man with obvious mental health issues. She didn’t have children with a man with obvious mental health issues. Yet a single circumstance sees her on a 9-year battle to get help for him. I feel humbled by her battle and in awe of her strength.

And yet.

I, like so many of us, can’t comprehend her situation. Can’t see past our own circumstances. Is this wrong? On so many levels it feels like it is. I feel guilty because I can’t give the wider issue that she raises the due attention it deserves because I’m wrapped up in my own. Aren’t we all? On another level, I feel grateful. I feel such a sense of relief that I don’t have to live everyday raising small humans to be decent citizens while trying to explain to them how society, as a whole dare I say, is letting their father down. Is it enough to think “that’s terrible, I wish there was something I could do” and move on to the next story? Well we all know the answer to that. At least I hope we do. Yet, it really isn’t that clear cut and simple, is it.

My issues, my mental health problems seem minor in comparison. I equally hate myself and commend myself for saying this. My situation is different. Completely different. Yet, the facts remain. I have epilepsy, I have MS, I have depression (& before the pedantic police pull me up, yes I know I’m supposed to say “suffer”), I have mental health issues and I struggle to see a way forward. I’m still functioning in society though and for this I feel grateful. Or am supposed to feel grateful.

I just don’t know that a society by which it’s ok to let a man and his family suffer for 9 years because the man doesn’t fit the right boxes to get him adequate help is the society I want to live in. It seems all I can do to try to change that is continue to help the lady raise awareness of her situation and to vote. Oh don’t get me wrong. A huge part, the vast majority indeed, of society are good people. People who are shocked and saddened when they hear of issues like this. That’s a good thing. Yet, I feel that we are gradually moving toward a time where this lady’s circumstances are the norm.

How very sad.

My own issues, when compared to this lady’s pale in comparison. But they are still valid. They are my day-to-day. And I suppose that’s what we all have to remember. It’s all relative. I can’t compare my situation to hers because it’s so very different. I can sympathise, but struggle to empathise. Perhaps because I really, simply just don’t want to imagine what it must be like to walk in her shoes.

I feel tired. I bet she does too. I feel emotional. I bet she does too. I’m battling my own demons, I bet she is too. I am utterly fatigued. I wonder if she is too. Her kids are suffering more than a child should. I don’t have to deal with that. Her husband is suffering more than a husband should. I don’t have to deal with that. She is battling hard to raise awareness. I wonder if I do enough of that. She is battling every day. I wonder if I have the strength to do that. Her pleas for assistance from the relative bodies are, effectively, being ignored. I struggle to raise to the relevant bodies my pleas.

The differences are pronounced, but the similarities can be found.

The moral of the story, in my eyes at least, are epically biblical. “There, but for the grace of “xxx”, go I”.

Another disjointed outpouring from a fatigued and emotional mind.

3

What next…?

It gets to the stage when you seriously question just how many times you can pick yourself back up.

10 days ago I was travelling home after spending the weekend with my oldest friend. My parents had kindly picked me up and we were driving north. A few miles outside of Edinburgh, I started to have a seizure in the back seat of the car. My head banged hard multiple times off the car door. I was taken straight to A&E where it took some time to persuade me to leave the car and when I finally did I started the second of the seizures. This time I thrashed on the gurney. Truthfully, I don’t remember any of this. I suspect the story I’ve been told has been softened up a little. I did spend 3 days in hospital. I did have 3 seizures and I did give myself a small bleed in my brain as proved by a CT Scan that I don’t remember having.

I was discharged from hospital a week ago. I don’t remember too much about any of that, but I do remember starting to feel really unwell as time was going on. When it became a bit more apparent to me that there was something not quite right with my face, I called NHS24 & was given an appointment at a hospital.

Long story, short. I have been diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy. Half my face is paralysed; one eye doesn’t close; my ears are constantly ringing and yet there is a sense of deafness in my right ear. I can’t speak very well. I can’t eat very well. And without putting too fine a point on it, I’m pretty scared.

Apparently, there isn’t really anything that can be done for Bell’s Palsy. There is a small chance that steroids can help if they are given soon enough after initial diagnosis, so I am currently on a high dose of them, but there are no guarantees. I’ve been told that it’s hard to go out with my face looking the way it does – reassuring! I’ve also been told to try to do it as soon as possible – terrifying! I’ve been for more scans, so perhaps that counts as being in public?! I’ve also got another appointment tomorrow, so maybe that is good enough to reinforce the “get out there” mentality?

A few weeks ago, I wrote about wondering whether I’d done any of “this” to myself. Here I am again. Where to go from here? At what point do I get to feel sorry for myself without inviting the comments about being a victim? Surely, it’s ok to feel a bit hard done by, no?

Epilepsy. MS. Depression. Bell’s Palsy.

Can that not please be enough? Please! Apart from the headaches and the pain, I feel a bizarre kind of emptiness. A sort of “what’s the point”? I don’t quite know the purpose of these struggles. What am I supposed to be learning? Isn’t there an Idiots Guide to… I can read instead? Who the hell have I upset so much that these afflictions are my punishment?

Ah, here they come. The tears. I can blink them away from one eye, but the other just streams. I know it’s going to leave my eye red, sore and swollen. Yet, there is nothing I can do about it. Just something else, that I have no option but to put up with. When does it end? When will it end? What can I do to make this all go away?

Yep, feeling sorry for myself now. Who cares? I’m not strong enough to take this and if I want to dissolve into buckets of tears then where is the harm in that? I’m not hurting anyone by doing that and maybe I just need to know that it’s ok not to be ok. Right? We get told that don’t we? That we don’t have to be strong all the time and that it’s ok to be scared sometimes?

So, here I am. Another affliction I can’t control. Another solitary journey. Another route I can’t explain to another and more feelings of inadequacy.

I don’t know how many more times I can pick myself back up.

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If sleep is for the weak…

No sleep for me again. My levels of fatigue at the moment are incredible but not in a good way. I want to sleep all the time and not because I’ve been burning the candle at both ends. I have a visit to the MS nurse this week and I’m really hoping she can suggest something that doesn’t come in a pill form to help me. I’m terrified of sleeping tablets and I’ve been on the losing side before, of a drug that was just meant to invoke mild drowsiness as a side-effect to dulling the effect of some of my MS symptoms. Coffee is my best friend at the moment.

Apparently though, I’m “strong”. I get that a lot. It sometimes makes me inwardly laugh as it seems my highly strung out, totally stressed and complete terror manifests itself as strength…in the eyes of others anyway. I wonder if my complete inability to acknowledge my fear and ask for help comes across as strength? Surely not. Perhaps it’s the fun I poke at myself and my epilepsy that makes people think I feel the same about my MS? I don’t.

God knows, when all this kicked off I tried really hard to be positive. Really hard. I changed my lifestyle to try to give myself a better chance of beating the odds, it didn’t last. I think the fatigue plays a massive part in this game. The more tired I am, the less convinced I am that I can scupper the negativity and regain the rosy view.

So that all got me to thinking invention and reinvention.

Invention, I suppose, is best described as the creation of something that didn’t exist. Then reinvention is taking something that exists and changing it to create something new. But, if necessity is the mother of invention, then what is the mother of reinvention? Evolution?

Take the wheel. We are often told that we should not try to reinvent the wheel, but was the wheel ever actually invented or rather did it evolve from something else? Around 5000 years BC there wasn’t any knowledge of a wheel per se. People – think Egyptians – used other methods to move objects. Logs for example. Logs are round(ish); wheels are round. So did the use of logs precipitate the evolution into wheels? The invention of the wheel can not be attributed to a single person. Around 3500 BC, across several cultures there is evidence of a wooden wheel being attached to carts. Then the wheel evolved further into the multitude of different “wheels” that we have today. As populations grew, trade increased and with other developments, I guess the invention of new circular objects, for example cogs, was required. Evolution is then the mother of reinvention, yes?

How does this relate to me then? Well, my life is evolving. Rapidly. These changes mean I need to make adjustments too. Is it time for a reinvention of myself? I don’t know. I’m rambling. It’s the tiredness…

The last few weeks have seen a new set of challenges. My Mum is in hospital, my Dad is using a washing machine unsupervised and the shower has started shooting water from the wall instead of the shower head.

The camel is, once again, being stacked with straw.

Sleep is for the weak…coffee is for the strong!

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MS, Epilepsy and Cooking…

There has been carnage in Kirsty’s kitchen the past couple of weeks! I have made a few conscious decisions based on my health situation and it’s time to follow through.

Those who know me well, know I like my food. I enjoy my food and I prefer it with either coffee or wine. Yet, for the sake of my health and to feel like I have a modicum of control over my body, I have chosen to change my lifestyle and that includes reviewing my diet.

I have decided that I am going to switch up my previous carnivore ways and move toward a wholefood, plant-based eating plan. In case you’re wondering, this means no meat, no fish, no dairy and no eggs. Why? Why? Why? I hear you cry (unless of course, you’re already eating this way and are whoop, whoop, whooping instead)! Let me explain…

Just a couple of weeks ago, I was delivered news that put my world on it’s head. In all honesty, I was (& probably still am) devastated by the news that I had MS. Brave public face aside, I was/am crushed. All I could see were dashed dreams & tattered hopes. But, I chose me. I’ve decided not to admit defeat to a disease. I’ve resolved to do what I can do to make positive changes in order to have the strength to meet the challenges ahead, head on. One of the few aspects of life I can change is what I eat. My brain does have an input (think cravings) but it also desperately needs proper fuel to fight disease.

So, for me, moving toward a wholefood, plant-based way of eating is a way of having some control and an attempt to make myself feel better and stronger. The benefit to animals and the environment, I have to admit, are secondary in my thinking at the moment. This is all about me, me, me. I’ve known for quite a while now that my lifestyle didn’t really do me any favours, so regardless of whether the changes to my diet and the fact I’m working out with Edinburgh Fitness Solutions have any affect on my neurological afflictions, they should have a hugely positive impact on how I feel in myself. 

So that’s the “why”. The “how” is where I’m at!!

Changing a long-standing habit isn’t easy. Especially if, like me, you find it a struggle to “give things up”. So, I decided that I’m going to do things a little differently. This is where it is useful that I’m doing this for myself and not because I’ve been told to by any medical professional. As far as I understand, there is no proven way to eat yourself out of MS. So, that gives me both a comfort blanket and a safety net. It also means I don’t have to give up habits overnight. I’ve done my research and I’ve decided that for me, my body, my lifestyle and my health, trying a wholefood, plant-based way of eating could be beneficial. There is no guarantee that it would work for everyone, but I want to know if it will work for me. So, I’ve been transitioning.

I’ve sought out and spoken to people who choose to be vegan (yes, that’s the generic label), to find out their experiences and get any hints and tips. I’ve done some research and am fully aware that being vegan doesn’t automatically make you healthy. And that’s why I’m also reducing the amount of processed foods I eat and why chaotic carnage reigns supreme in my kitchen! One of the people I spoke to advised me not to think of it as giving up certain foods (cheese, milk & eggs being my biggest worry) but to regard it as an opportunity to try new flavours, textures and foods. That way, you will be less likely to feel deprived and that you’re somehow missing out. This is working for me. 

So, I’ve been going through this transition for about 3 weeks now. It’s going well, I think. I’m rediscovering my taste buds and some foods that I previously decided I didn’t like, I’m finding that actually when I try them, they’re not so bad. Meat and fish have been the easiest to let go of. The meat surprised me, as I thought of my self as a major carnivore! Cheese was a little more of a struggle, but through trial and error I’ve found an alternate that I can happily live with. Milk in my tea – wow. Tough!! Coffee, if it’s good quality, I can happily drink black, but tea? No way. Tea with soya milk? Bleurgh! Tea with oatmilk? No way Jose! Tea with hemp milk? Not a chance! Tea with coconut milk? Like hell!! Black tea? Well I’m getting there. I’m finding that rooibus is working black and my favourite, Earl Grey, if it’s good quality and bizarrely decaf, then yes, I can do that.

Most folks don’t know that I’m moving toward this new way of eating. I’m not being evangelical about it (there was no way I was missing out on a surprise Afternoon Cream Tea on Saturday) but the more people find out I’m choosing this way to eat, and the more eateries I discover to cater for this way to eat, then all the better.

The last blog I wrote stated “I choose me”. I stand by this. I’m doing this for me. So far, most have been supportive and those that haven’t? Well that’s fine too.

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Still Standing…although…

…my knees are a bit wobbly!

In grand terms, I’m still trying to get my head around having Epilepsy and MS.

It took me quite a while to accept epilepsy into my life (and into the lives of those around me), I know it will be the same for MS. Yet, it somehow feels like I have a bit more to lose now.

Frankly, today, yep I’m on a bit of a downer. The whole situation seems very overwhelming for me and I know it also is for my family. Although this is my blog and these are my thoughts and feelings, I am extremely aware that it’s not just me this affects. I have the luxury of being able to get my thoughts out in writing, as I know me better than most and I know I would struggle to successfully say what I am able to write. I don’t know why that is. Although, I suspect it’s because this is my chance to free-wheel, as it were!! I get to write without having to clarify, justify or question what I’m feeling.

Don’t get me wrong. I want people to ask me questions. They often ask about things I haven’t thought of for myself and they often help me see with fresh eyes. Sometimes though, the questions I don’t have answers for scare the living bejesus out of me. It often feels like it’s all “me, me, me,” and do you know what, sometimes it is!! That said though, I know there is no way at all I’d be standing on wobbly knees if it weren’t for the people around me. My family aside, my friends and loved ones are what makes this situation bearable. The ones who call me out on my crap (Sarah – I’m thinking about you especially here :0) ) because they care. The ones who are brutally honest with me and can deliver that honesty with just the right amount of tenderness, keep me strong. The ones who just allow me to be me whether I’m wallowing or moving mountains, without saying a word. The ones who go out for lunch or dinner with me, knowing there is a good chance I’m going to talk/moan about my situation. The ones who sit next to me while we watch tv. The ones who push me on in the gym. The ones who make me laugh when I think I will never laugh again. The ones who let me cry and then ask if I’m “done now, because I’m missing the rugby”. All of them, serve to remind me that I’m not alone and I can do “this”.

So wobbly knees to hell with you!! Hmm – except after a million squats, then you can be as shaky as you want!! I’m changing my life to adapt to that which I need to adapt to. Some of you may not recognise me when I’m done, but that’s ok. Some may choose not to stand with me anymore, but that’s their choice. Others may decide to walk with me, though they’ve never travelled my path, that would be brilliant and I thank them. 

I choose to accept there will always be birdshits on the path of life. I choose to remember that if I stick my head in the sand, I leave my ass exposed. I choose to recognise that if I don’t make decisions about my life, then someone else will do it for me. 

I choose me.

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Epilepsy and Truth…

You look fine! You look great! Are you feeling better? Some of the comments and questions I’ve had this week. It’s nice that people care. I look ok, bruises have gone, scratches are healing and make-up is wonderful! Do I feel better? Hmm. Physically, I feel ok. Yay! Mentally, I’m struggling. People don’t really want to hear that. It’s hard to know how to respond. They just want the “yeah, I feel better thanks”. I can understand that. Like I say, it’s lovely that people care enough to even ask the question.

I’m not feeling better though. I’m scared and I’m worried and I’m still trying to shake the disjointed feeling that’s been bugging me for the last few weeks. I feel like I’ve fallen apart and been put back together again, but the wrong way. It feels like there is a piece of me in the wrong place, or a bit missing. The fatigue is all encompassing .My brain is trying its best and I give it so much credit for its ability to act practically and tell my body to do the things it’s meant to be doing. So, I can work, I can write, I can do things that I would normally do and I can do them fairly well, pretty quickly after an episode. So, the physical side of things is doing not bad at all. The metaphysical side though, well its taking a bit of time to sort through the feelings.

A friend said to me a few days ago, that I have to tell the truth about what happened and how it makes me feel so that people have a chance to really try to understand what I’m going through. He is right. It’s not that I’ve lied about what happened, it’s just that I’ve given a sanitised version, probably as a means of self-preservation for me and so that others don’t worry about me so much. Having to come up with a system whereby a friend has permission to contact various people if they don’t hear from me within a certain timeframe, is particularly hard for me. I know it’s for my benefit, but it feels like an imposition on my friend, even though they assure me it isn’t. It feels like I’m being constantly watched and I find that so very very difficult to deal with. Oh, I know the logic, I understand the logic, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it. Why do I tone down how I really feel? Well, there are a few reasons. I find it makes it easier for others, they’re less inclined to worry if they think I’m ok and not concerned about my condition. Secondly, it’s a means of me retaining an element of control over my own life. The emotions are complex. Hell, I don’t understand them so I’m not entirely sure how I’m supposed to explain them!

When I initially became aware that something was wrong and something had happened, I was lying on my bed. Face down, in a pool of vomit. I got up and went to the bathroom where I saw I’d also vomited. I went from there to the front room where I noticed I’d also vomited on the sofa. My thought process was to unzip the sofa covering and put it in to the washing machine. A good move, my sofa covering is washable, so a perfectly reasonable thing to do. After I set the washing machine off, I went back to bed and I lay back down in the pool of vomit. It would probably have been the more sensible thing to strip the bed and wash the linen first, no? I’m always sick after a seizure. The difference is there was no one around to hold my hair back and make sure I didn’t lie face down in it. I can remember thinking while I was putting the sofa covers in the washing machine that I really wanted a cup of tea. There was no-one there to make one for me, and I couldn’t really remember how to do it. So, I went without. I don’t know why I knew how to work the washer, but I didn’t know how to make a cup of tea.

I’m still trying, in vain, to put together the jigsaw. I know I spoke to my brother on the Friday night and I know I came to on the Sunday morning. I know I must have moved around after the initial fit, because the sickness always comes afterwards and I was sick in several different places. What I don’t know, is exactly when the first seizure occurred, how long it lasted or where it happened. And I have no idea how many seizures I had. I don’t know how long I was unconscious for. I know I was present enough on Sunday to be able to get myself from my house to my parents place. I know that I behaved appropriately in the company at my parents’ house. I know I didn’t go to the hospital, but said I did. I know that after knowingly living with epilepsy for 26 years, this is the first time I remember having felt so horribly disjointed for so long after an episode. When my brother dropped me off at my home after being at my parents place, I walked off in the wrong direction because I couldn’t think where my house was. I did eventually turn around and go in the right direction, after yelling at my brother for letting me go the wrong way! He said he thought I was going to the shop – aye, right!

I’ve talked before about feeling more afraid of what comes after the seizures, than the physical act of seizing. The depressions after the episodes are deep and what feels like a tear in my soul takes a while to heal. I fear those feelings. Why? I know they change me. They change my personality. They chip away my self-esteem and they hack away my self-confidence. I fear the part of my epilepsy that I can’t see, but can only feel. Now, I find myself in the position of trying to deal with the intangible, while battling hard a terror that I’ve never felt before.

I accepted a long time ago, a very long time ago, that I have epilepsy. I made a conscious decision to live alongside the condition and to not let it consume me or dictate to me how I live my life. I firmly believe that having epilepsy is not the end of the world. Life could be considerably worse. I find myself trying to maintain this belief while coming to terms with a feeling of fear that I’ve never had before. I’m scared to leave my house. I’m scared to be among people. And no, the irony of that isn’t lost on me. I was alone, in my house when this episode happened. Yet, I don’t want to be with people and I don’t want to leave my home. It’s an effort to do anything. My workplace aswell as my friends, have been amazing. I’m not sure how other people who suffer chronic, unpredictable illnesses manage if they have a less-than supportive workplace. I’m very lucky.

I feel like giving in to the feelings. I feel like just staying in the house and getting my GP to sign me off work, so that I can just stay home. I have no need to leave it. I can do virtually everything I need to do, well, virtually. Every day I persuade myself that I must leave the house. That I must continue to fight. Every day I have to remind myself that I’m still Kirsty. I remind myself of the promise I made to me, not to let epilepsy win. The battle is constant. I know others that don’t suffer, find it hard to empathise. There are no physical signs anymore that I’ve had a seizure. Yes, I look fine. I look “normal”. I don’t feel it though.

I was telling my friend that someone had said to me that they’d noticed a real change in my personality a couple of days before the fits. He was saying that if I told more people the cold, hard truth about how epilepsy affects me, then they would be more switched on to the signs that an episode is coming. That’s not to say that the episode could be prevented, that would never be the case for me, but it would maybe mean that I could make sure that I was going to be in a safer environment in terms of me not being alone for such a length of time. It’s hard to know with me though, as I’m such a moody person, whether it’s a sign or whether it’s just me with my knickers in a twist over something! I asked him if he would be prepared to take that chance and his response was that he would rather piss me off, than have me go through what I’m going through. I thought a lot about what he said to me.

Although relatives have died through having epilepsy, it isn’t something that preyed on my mind or something I dwelled on; until now. I believed that just because it happened to them, didn’t mean that it was going to happen to me. I’m trying to persuade myself that to believe anything other than that would be a bit silly and ultimately detrimental to my overall health. Yet, there it is. It does happen.

So, the truth of this episode for me, is that it’s brought with it a whole range of feelings that I’ve never had to deal with and don’t know how to. I’m scared. Yes, I’ll smile with you. Yes, I’ll laugh. Yes, it will seem to you that everything is normal with me. It’s not. The battle lines have been redrawn and until I can come to terms with that and find a way to deal with it, life is going to be a little different.

There has to be positives in this though. When I find a way through it, and I will, surely I will emerge a stronger person with a new arsenal of weapons to tackle everyday life with. That’s the first thing. Secondly, I’ve been reminded again how much people care. Support comes from the most unexpected and far-flung places and I’m grateful for that.

3

Epilepsy and Coping…

Coping. What’s the alternative? Is there one? Right now, this precise moment in time, I’m coping with epilepsy and all that it spawns, because there aren’t any other options that I can see.

Coping. Such a mediocre word that goes no where near to describe the Herculean effort involved. To cope; a verb . A doing word, meaning to deal effectively with. Coping, to me, means I’m managing to keep my head above water and deal with the fact I have epilepsy, knowing that there is nothing I can do about it. Coping, to me, means trying to come up with some way of accepting that the medical profession appear to have bowed out and left me to it. Coping, to me, means trying to endure without giving cause to worry to others. Coping, to me, is giving the impression I’m in control and that epilepsy is not winning.

Can epilepsy win? Epilepsy is part of me, a part of my brain and its active, apparently, constantly. My brain, as my consultant put it, is constantly shedding excess electricity. I can’t separate epilepsy out from my brain. I can’t just put it in a little box, put the lid on and forget about it. It doesn’t work like that. I have to find a mechanism that allows me to deal with having epilepsy and its entourage of groupies playing with the electrics of my brain. If I can’t find a strategy that works then yes, epilepsy will win and I’ll have to try to live with the fireworks. Over the years, I’ve managed. I’ve had to. So why does it feel like that’s changing?

I have an anger in me at the moment. I can feel it behind my sternum. It’s preventing me from taking a deep breath. I’m angry at me, I’m angry at some others and I’m angry at epilepsy. Anger, allowed to fester unabated, will serve no other purpose than to strengthen the strangle hold of epilepsy and undermine every single coping mechanism I’ve ever garnered over the years. If epilepsy wins, then anger will share the podium. I don’t know how I turned into an angry person. My anger mostly manifests itself inwardly and is a destructive force in my soul, but sometimes it takes control of my vocal chords and it strums out sounds that I give form to and the words give hurt and bitterness a voice that’s often pointed in the wrong direction.

I’m struggling and I don’t know what to do. I’m weary and I’m weak. And I hate just how pathetic that sounds. How whiny. How self-indulgent. How full of self-pity.

How selfish I am. Why on earth should I feel sorry for myself? What do I have to be angry about? I have epilepsy; so what? It’s just one of a million chronic diseases that people every where deal with constantly. I should have been in London this weekend, but a stomach bug put paid to that. I seem to have bugs, colds, illnesses more or less constantly at the moment and I have to wonder how much of that is down to me only just coping. Weakened physically as well as mentally.

Coping isn’t an easy option. It’s draining physically and mentally. Energy is something I once had but I’ve kinda forgotten what it feels like. What’s the alternative to coping? Giving up? Pushing all responsibility onto another? Relinquishing control? No, that sounds just a bit too selfish to me. Tempting, but selfish. But what else is there? Truthfully, I do not know.

Today may well be a duvet day. A day I hide in bed and pretend that everything is ok. But tomorrow? The next day? I have no choice. I have to get up, get dressed and show up to work. It pays the bills. Do I want to? Well, that doesn’t matter.

At the moment, coping is the only option I have.