Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Being sick sucks. Particularly when you are so ill that you feel barely able to function in the world, yet your illness does not show up on any routine tests, since it is not a routine illness that the universe bestowed upon you. Nothing is more insulting than having a condescending doctor imply that you cannot really be feeling as bad as you feel since your bloodwork doesn't have an indication of it. Most chronic diseases do not show up most of the time in bloodwork. That is a fact. The most common disability in the United States is chronic illness - another fact. Many chronic illnesses - specifically nearly all the autoimmune diseases, of the type I have, occur far more often in women than in men. Most doctors are men. Most men are sexist. The world of Western medicine is disturbed by patriarchy just like every other aspect of our society, and is not, historically, as helpful to women as it is to men.

Incidentally, the number one killer of women is heart disease. Only in the past couple of years have I heard that statistic on television. Many people still seem to believe that breast cancer is more common than heart disease in women, when, actually, the opposite is true. Further, autoimmune diseases are far more common than breast cancer. One might wonder why, if this is the case, is there not more funding into research of all the autoimmune diseases. Good question to ponder when you have the time.

ALSO, for the person who criticized me in another post's comments, I would like to let you know, I don't accept your criticism. I will not apologize that being sick makes me angry, that I don't enjoy being sick, that I hate wasting my life away in doctors' offices, that sixteen years of incurable chronic illness is really ENOUGH for me, and I am not exactly welcoming more sickness to enter into my life. I don't feel apologetic about that in the least, and I don't really give a damn if anyone thinks this is a "negative" way to talk in one's blog. It's the truth. I have no patience for bullshit. I like the truth. And the truth is, I hate being sick with every cell in my being. Dislike me if you want. That's your perogative.

Yesterday I saw a cardiologist who said one possibility of my recent chest pain and palpitations that occur quite frequently (thought not an explanation of other problems that are occurring), is that the Phentermine might have caused problems. Another possibility is that my heart has some problems on its own. Either way, I have to get a bunch of cardiac tests done now, and I have already, many years ago, undergone a zillion medical tests and certainly enough to last me a lifetime. I don't relish having to go through more of that nonsense. I have far better things to do with my time than that. But that is what I'll be doing.

And if Phentermine caused some damage, that is truly ironic, because I am only on Phentermine to combat the huge weight gain that I got from a medication I have to take because I am mentally ill on top of being physically ill. That is really cute. Of course, if Phentermine is the only problem causing all these symptoms, I will be quite happy as that would mean no actual heart disease (unless it caused heart disease). But I am wary of believing simplistic explanations like that for complex problems. My experience has been that I don't get a load of luck when it comes to health issues.

I am grateful for the health I do have, don't get me wrong. I am grateful for a lot of things. But once in a while a woman has to vent to somebody somewhere.

That said, I also saw a documentary Friday that was called Shooting Beauty, about severely physically disabled people, and it was amazingly beautiful. It was at the Gasparilla Film Festival in Tampa, and there were only about ten people watching that particular film, which won't be shown anywhere near you, most likely, ever, but if it is, you should check it out. Unfortunately, after that outing, I had to spend two days barely doing anything but sleep as my body was completely wiped out by everything. Such is life sometime.

1 comment:

  1. I think it is perfectly rational to not like being ill. I think trying to pretend that you don't dislike it would only be forcing away your real feelings about it and might create enough emotional stress to even make things worse. Hang in there, Jen. I think it is good that you can and do appreciate the health that you do have. There is nothing wrong with appreciating that and still having the feelings of resenting the things that make life difficult. All of these feelings are NORMAL. I think YOU are normal, too. And I like you.


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