Do you fight for yourself?
Do you stand up for yourself when your family innocently or not insults you and your battle against A.S.? Do you make the doctor listen when they are trying to push you out the door? It can be frustrating to always be on the defensive. I know sometimes I just let it slide because I’m just too tired to get into it. My family has never tried to hurt my feelings when it comes to my battle against Ankylosing Spondylitis but it has happened. There are always the stray comments that seem to spill out for no apparent reason. I have to remind myself that these people are just saying what has been ingrained in their minds. I try and educate them instead of getting upset. We can’t expect anyone to understand if we don’t, right?
I also have given up on playing super woman. When I need help I ask for it. This was very hard for me to do but the time has come that I must accept Ankylosing Spondylitis is part of me and it is not going away. I have learned it doesn’t mean I’m weak because I need help. It means that I’m choosing my battles wisely.
We shouldn’t be afraid to say how we feel. I always feel like I’m complaining when people ask how I’m doing. So I try never to mention the real things going on in my life and sugar coat everything. I sometimes have absolutely nothing to say because I’m out of sugar! I have not found a balance here but I am starting to be more open about how I really feel. It’s refreshing for me but whether or not it’s driving my friends crazy, well I can’t answer that. I guess it comes down to how I feel though and not what others think. If I feel like crap and have been sick yet again I should be able to say that with out feeling bad emotionally on top of physically. I didn’t ask for this crud. I’m just trying my best to deal with it and have a life aside from it.
When it comes to standing up for myself in the office well I’m not going to lie, I don’t. I was honest with my boss for the first time a couple years back and it scared them to the point they cut my workload. I can’t battle that decision but I can keep quiet from now on. It is hard though. I do wish I had a work environment where I could talk about my life the same as others get to about theirs but that is just not the case with a chronic illness.
It seems those that suffer a chronic debilitating disease aren’t given enough with the disease itself as they are expected to also never complain about their battles. I don’t know about you but this bothers me. I don’t want to complain all the time but don’t ask me a question you don’t want the answer to. If you ask how I feel I’m going to tell you. If you don’t want to hear don’t ask. It’s as simple as that!
Do not feel bad about sharing how you feel or accepting the fact that you need help sometimes. The stress from trying to do it all alone is much worse than just opening up and asking for help.