I live with an autoimmune disease. In short, it means a regular healthy immune system – fights the germs at come in. An autoimmune disease, like in my immune system attacks itself.
So when your immune system doesnt fight off the virus and you get the flu or a cold, you get that tired, achy feeling, with the accompanying headache, tummy ache, muscle aches. Mine means that my immune system is in over drive, and along with it, I get that cold and flu feeling every day. Some days worse than others, but every day I wake up, I know I will not feel good.
I wake up already tired, and with a headache and/or muscle aches, an upset belly or sore throat. (Another post -the technicalities of what exactly it is, but for now, it’s a retro virus, embedded like an undercover soldier, attacking from within.)
This pic was taken at the gum wall – gum alley – near Pikes Place Market in Seattle. (I’ve heard it’s no longer there.) if you don’t look too closely, at first glance, it’s kind of cool. Colorful wads, in 3D effect, 10ish feet high, and yards long.
In classic touristy fashion we waited our turn to snap pictures, waiting for others to clear the background. …and then, as you pose, and stand close, you start to think about it. Wads and wads of slobbery chewed up bubble gum, hastily pressed into place, and as the afternoon sun rises and warms it, long gobs begin to drip and fall.
So, maybe a picture is more descriptive than my words can be….living with an autoimmune disease, I feel day in and day out – like a chewed up piece of Hubba Bubba! A short spurt of energy, quickly turns hard and tired, and useless. And those long gooey strands, I feel like that – stretched thin, trying to pull myself together. If you’re like me, you just want to spit that gum out, but you give it a little more time, trying to extract the last bit of usefulness!
My days aren’t all bad, but they are all affected. I became very sick with my disease in my late teens. At the time, I had hoped I would be better in 3-6 years. But I also determined at that time, when you see me, I would try to not complain and focus on the disease. I did not want it to define who I was. I did not want everyone to avoid me because of my complaining. (I know I’m not always too successful, but I still hope to live this way.)
I don’t tell my story to ask for pity or sympathy but maybe give a bit more understanding of my day to day and the lives of many many others.
-just thinking about this today, another day in bed, hoping I’ll have a few productive hours tonite when my family gets home!
Thanks so much for stopping by,
your friend -Lynn