Predicting The Future
Many years ago I was involved in a relationship which was very difficult and ultimately destructive. One of the ways that it was very difficult was because it was unpredictable in how the other person was going to act or react at any given time; even their moods were unpredictable and changed often.
As I look back I am reminded of all the times when I was heartbroken by an argument or how this person might have acted during the course of a day. One moment they could be happy and the next they could be raging with anger. It was hard to have any type of life like this let alone a happy one.
Predictability is a big part of any relationship in the sense that we need to know how or why the other person may act and what you can rely on them to do or say. It is not hard to understand why my past relationship broke down and it is easy to see why it really could never have gone any further.
We can all relate to such difficulties and struggles with relationships and with various people in our lives but very few people understand what it means not to have predictability and reliability over your own bodies and health.
It is for this reason that I struggle immensely living with Autoimmune diseases as they are the most unpredictable illnesses around. It is truly heartbreaking. Most of the time sufferers can have absolutely no control over what our bodies are going to do (or not do) and it is soul destroying most of the time.
My unpredictable body has meant I have not travelled on holiday in nearly 8 years and have rarely left my home. My unpredictable body means I haven’t seen some friends and loved ones in decades. My unpredictable body means I never know what tomorrow is going to bring or whether I will be able to celebrate even the smallest of things.
There has been the occasional cruel person who has said “oh it can’t be that bad!”… “she is just doing it for attention!”… “if she really wanted to”… or “I know plenty of people with (insert illness) and they are a lot better than you!”
I can only assume that the purpose of such remarks is to somehow shame sufferers into behaving differently and to attempt to make us do things that others would want us to do. But we can’t. And I have begun to realize that we shouldn’t even listen to such comments or remarks.
Sometimes I really don’t blame others for part of their ignorance when it comes to these diseases as I was ignorant myself at some time of my life and I can’t always understand what my body is doing or going to do either! I share a lot of their frustrations but only on a far more profound scale.
I have missed appointments with specialists because I could not move my limbs or because my cluster headaches have me crippled and struggling to function. I have missed birthdays, anniversaries and holidays, much to my sadness and disappointment.
But what can be done?
Having to accept the unpredictable nature of these diseases and never knowing what we can/cannot do on any given day is tantamount to torture but I have to keep trying to accept it as my reality now.
Sometimes it is the lack of control of these diseases that is worse than any of the many other symptoms. Especially for me. The struggle to live and love within the confines of a broken body and immune system takes Herculean effort but for many of us out there we have no choice.