I was born with internal differences to my organs.
One of my organs is a complete brat, who stands up and yells “Pay attention to me. ME ME ME! I need to be the CENTER of attention. It’s all about ME. Only ME!”, whenever any other part of my body is sick and needs attention.
And I end up yelling “Fuck You (name of organ)”, to my organ. Sometimes it’s an entire paragraph, of “Fuck You. You are not the centre of attention. It’s not all about you. Do not bother me.”
But of course it is… partly.
That particular organ has gotten a lot of attention, and is by now it completely used to demanding my life revolve around it… maybe I should be too.
I’m not. I’m angry with my body. I can not and will not embrace my body, and not because of it’s looks, weight or any other superficial reason.
I will not become “at one with my body”, or any of those other hokey euphemisms healthy people tout without knowledge.
I will not accept my body is me, because I’m not broken.
I may be flawed, I may have grumpy days and days that all I want to do is cry. Everybody does.
But I am not as broken as my body.
I have always known that my body and me are separate. Even as a child. That’s why I can yell “Fuck you”, to my different organs, without saying “Fuck you”, to myself.
I wish all health professionals knew what it was like to be sick, to have an organ or body part that doesn’t obey, to know that the body and mind are not one, and to know what it’s like to just get up in the morning and ignore aches, pains and illnesses until it can no longer be ignored.
I wish they understood that dilemma when asked a piece of medical history. Should I mention it? Is it related? It’s really to do with this other problem I’ve already been diagnosed with? Will it just muddy the water?
If I mentioned everything in my medical history, you and I would be in that examining room way too long. Try all afternoon.
And then there are the times I just simply forget to mention things because I’m so busy ignoring them that I’m still ignoring them in the examining room.
One specialist doctor asked so many rapid fire questions, I didn’t have time to think about any of the answers. After 10 or more questions quickly fired in my direction, she told me there was nothing wrong with me, and not to waste her time.
She asked so quickly, I got anxious and answered all the questions wrong. I asked for a second opinion but the second specialist, looked at the notes of the first doctor and said “I talked to Dr. So and So. These are her notes, and I agree with her, but here’s some medication you can take.”, handed me a prescription and got up to leave the room. I followed because I had no other choice.
I still wonder if both doctors are wrong, but with her notes, whatever they say, every specialist in her field in my city, who all work out of the same hospital, are going to agree with her. Asking for a third opinion is a waste of everybody’s time, and the systems money.
My family doctor agrees. He thinks I do have the problem he originally sent me for, and is trying to manage the problem without the direction of a specialist, but why should he have to? Why should one doctor’s complete ignorance about what it’s like to answer those questions when you have been sick all your life and have multiple diagnosis’s, get in the way of my health? Why should she have so much power?
Maybe if she understood how difficult it is to answer questions delivered so quickly when you’re asking yourself so many questions about how to answer them, she would give her patients time to think before she asks another question?
I really do wish that all medical professionals were given a drug with a half life of 2 weeks (or even a month), that made them chronically sick for that time period. I want them to wake up in pain, and consciously think about getting out of bed, before they do it.
I want them to have a handful of pills they have to take multiple times a day, and figure out how hard it is to remember each and every dosage, each and every day.
I want them to know what it’s like to be hungry, know you have to eat because not eating will make you sicker, but not have the energy to cook something. Finally you just pick something from a box, put it in the oven and forget about it until it’s ready, but it causes guilt because you know you need to eat better, and unhealthy food might make things worse, but it’s better than eating nothing, because if I eat nothing I can’t take my pills and then…. And the thoughts go in circles of guilt.
I want them to know what it’s like to be too tired to exercise, but feel guilty that you aren’t exercising because you know you should, and then have to explain that to somebody who judges when they “how much exercise do you get”, at your next doctor’s appointment.
I want them to understand how much guilt there is in being sick.
I want them to know they don’t have to add more guilt, and that adding guilt doesn’t help me to be more “compliant”, to only makes it harder.
I want them to know how chronically sick people can be caregivers of even sicker people in the family, put themselves last, and feel guilty about paying attention to their own health problems (even mentioning them), because somebody else is sicker.
I want them to know what it is like to calculate in your head, how much energy it takes to go to the bathroom, and then figure out if it will take more or less energy to return to the place you are when you’re done or just go to bed.
I want them to know, that they don’t see patients at their sickest (unless they are in the ICU), because patients who are really sick, don’t have the energy or health it takes to get dressed, get in the car, drive to the doctor, find a parking space, walk to the office, and see the doctor. Instead they wait until they are feeling healthier to either go to the doctor or just forget about it and get one with life. Or they get so sick they can’t stand it and get somebody to drive them to the emergency room.
I want medical professionals to take a drug, be this sick for a month, and truly understand what it is like to be chronically sick.
Until you know what it’s like to yell one of your organs with frustration, anger and desperation, and understand what it’s like to be sick (from experience) don’t judge me.