Sunday, April 29, 2012

Remember when I said that I didn't want to whine?

Well I lied. I have a feeling...something like a gut feeling, only lower down and burning like h*ll...that this is going to be a whiney post. If that's a problem, you might want to skip it and wait for the more chipper one that I am fairly sure will come along eventually. Probably.

I am IC flare again. AGAIN. Or maybe it's "still". I don't know anymore.

 I went to see my doctor last week for a yearly check up and basically just told him how awful the last year has been and how much pain I've been in, and cried. I have no words for how tired I am of this. It has been said, by people who presumably know more that I do about these things, that the pain of IC when it is really bad can equal that of bladder cancer. Except...and I know this sounds insensitive and ungrateful but I pity the fool who dares remind me of that right now...ICers don't get to die. Not from the IC, anyway. It has also been noted that when symptoms of IC were induced in lab rats, some of the rats chewed their bladders out of their body to get rid of the pain. I totally get it.

 So, why do I think these things at times like this? Honestly? Because I am crushed and discouraged by this stupid illness and yet I still feel I have to justify writing about it in my own blog by predicating my right to feel this way with horror stories about rats and cancer victims. I know that this shouldn't be. The fact that I feel this way adds to the discouragement.

 There is an odd disconnect between what my brain knows and what my heart feels. I have been literally mocked for being chronically ill, called a liar, a fake, lazy, even crazy. As I stood up for myself and proclaimed it all lies, even as I asserted that being sick wasn't a sin but mistreating someone who was sick was a grave and serious sin, tiny seeds of doubt and shame were dropped into my heart and I think that they have taken root.

 The result is, I can't feel comfortable talking about how difficult it is to live with IC without first offering some sort of proof that the suffering is real, proof from sources other than myself. That's just not right.

 I have been praying lately that God would help me let go of all sources of unhealthy shame in my life. I recognize the role of healthy guilt, but there are so many places in my life where I just don't feel adequate, or I feel shame that has nothing to do with anything that God would concern Himself with. Things get all twisted around, and I end up feeling ashamed of being so sick (which is absolutely NOT something that God wants me to feel ashamed of) and my accusers feel proud and self-righteous about tearing down and wounding someone who is already suffering,(something that God, according to Jesus' example, seriously goes all "fire and brimstone" over).

 Letting go of unhealthy shame means being more honest about how I feel. Even with myself. It means knowing who I am in God's eyes and only His eyes. It means allowing others to be themselves as well, to be as patient with other peoples journeys as I know God is with mine. It means learning to say that I am hurting, even if I am saying it for the umpteenth time in as many weeks. It means understanding if others are tired of hearing it, but saying it anyway. This disease sucks for everyone, including those who are close to me.

 The people who have gotten angry and hurtful about it are people who were close to me, and resented the fact that IC touched their lives the way it did, through me. They took their anger out on me, as if it were my choice.

 In fact, the "Christians" among them asserted that it WAS my choice, as I obviously did not trust God enough for Him to heal me. I know, I verbal abuse and condemnation were supposed to strengthen my faith or lead to healing is beyond me, as well. I think prayer is the usual path to take for this stuff. You know, the whole bearing each other's burdens thing.

 In any case, I understand that living and loving someone with IC is hard. I also understand that God, my Father, does not take kindly to people who purposely hurt people who are already hurting. So I let Him handle that. It's not mine to hold. And that is the point. Living with this pain is mine to hold. Sometimes, being able to hold it means talking about it. How others react to that is NOT mine to hold.

 And I know I am not writing this for you, my dear friends and family who love me and are so incredibly supportive and nurturing. I am writing this for me, to me, so that I can read it in black and white.

 I am in a lot if pain. I feel discouraged and weepy and weak, and am so tired of being ill.

 Yup. That's about it for today. Good night, all.

Monday, April 23, 2012

I was reminded recently that it has been a while since I have updated my blog. I have to admit, I appreciate reminders like this. It lets me know that people are reading, and are interested, not just in what I write but in how things are going in my world. This makes me feel loved, which is always a good thing.

There have been a few changes since I last wrote, nothing earth shattering but still significant to me. For one thing, although one wouldn't know it from looking out the window today, Spring has sprung. The days are longer, warmer and full of hope. Walking in the neighbourhood is an opportunity to enjoy the flower gardens in the yards of the neat little houses.

Although I am not a power gardener, this time of year always awakens a desire in me to plant things and to nurture them to fruition. This year, my older sister gave me a great idea for planting a garden in the little back yard of my rented apartment. Using pallets, black gardening paper and imported dirt (and hopefully a few shovelfuls of a friend's compost pile), I am hoping to be able to create a little garden. Isn't this a great idea?
I've also made a special Mother's Day request for flowers to plant, and I want to try to put together a little memorial flower spot for Mum.

Other changes aren't so pleasant, and basically involve car problems, relationship issues, health miseries and a vague sense of anxiety that has settled into my stomach and seems to have made it's home there. Still, I am learning to keep plodding forward, doing the tasks that today holds and doing my best not to trip over tomorrow.

I'd elaborate, but to be honest, I don't want to be whiney. The truth is, I'm starting to annoy myself. I can't stand the perky, pollyanna, "smile through the pain and pretend no-one can see my gritted teeth" thing. Nor can I listen to any more of my own "sharing" about how sick and tired I am of being sick and tired. *shrugs*

One especially nice change is Mycroft, our new kitty. He showed up a few weeks ago, lurked in the back yard by the fence for a week, watching the house. He showed up at on our steps on afternoon, I pet him and he never left. I ignored him for the first day, but when he spent the entire night sitting on my step staring hopefully up at the door, I gave in.

He fits in really well. Best of all, he's a good buddy for Jean-Luc. He's young, has lots of energy, and participates gleefully in Jean-Luc's wild, racing rampages. Together, they sound like a herd of elephants charging around upstairs. I love it.

He's not fixed, and he heads out to prowl the streets every night. Which is okay, because when he is inside, his favorite sleeping spot just happens to be Jean-Luc's as well - the foot of my bed, on my legs. Because it's not like, in my double bed, there isn't a whole half of the bed that they could lie in without getting kicked in the middle of the night. Silly cats.

Grace named him Mycroft. For Sherlock Holme's brother. Because she is obsessed.
My Zimbio