I’ve always been able to laugh about almost any situation no matter how bad it is, and that’s been my coping mechanism for surviving chronic illness. I have to admit though, I’ve had a hard time laughing lately. I’m not really sure where my sense of humor went but it seems to have disappeared, possibly it petered out when the weather warmed up. With the warm weather I know that I will have swollen, painful, and non functional hands for the next 9 months. Humidity is not my friend, which is unfortunate when you live on the Gulf Coast. I miss being able to use my hands.
Possibly my sense of humor is just worn out from coping for so long. After six years of trying to laugh my way through illness, I’m wearing a bit thin. My patience for other people’s petty concerns seems to be decreasing even as I try to prevent it from happening. I know that empathy is the greatest gift I’ve been given in this journey and I hate to lose it to cynicism. It’s just hard to listen to people complain about pain they’ve inflicted on themselves and not want to scream about the pain I’m in due to no fault of my own. In the past I’ve been able to relate to people experiencing acute pain just because I know how hard pain is. Now I just want to shake them until they know how lucky they are. I need my empathy back.
Possibly my sense of humor has been beaten down because of misunderstandings. All the people who misunderstand me and my illness and feel the need to pronounce judgments leave me feeling tired and worn out. I tire of having to explain my limitations over and over again. I tire of explaining that despite my limitations I’m a human being and not exactly useless. I tire of being pushed down and out of the way. I tire of being treated like I am an inconvenience to others. I’m just done proving my illness to people. I’m done trying to fit my illness in a nice little box that other people have built, it’s just too draining.
I’m in a funk, there is no doubt about it. For now I’m just trying to hold my head up and keep on. I’m trying to help others when I can so I don’t just dwell on my own problems. I’m trying to stop trying to please people who will never be pleased and go my own way. I know what I’m capable of and I’m tired of people trying to tell me differently. I’m going to keep on and keep living and keep fighting. I’ll never give up.