A Brief Respite

Where to begin?

While this is a blog about chronic illness and chronic pain I feel I should take a break every now and then to decompress from it all. I figure it’s only fair that I take my own advice, and one of my tips for living with chronic illness and pain is to avoid falling down that rabbit hole where you can become all-consumed with whatever is ailing you. And, while knowledge is power, for the person dealing with the chronic illness, it can be very overwhelming at times. That being said, the other reason for my brief respite is the state of the world right now that I also find very overwhelming.

I do not think I have ventured into politics in my blog, but perhaps have given you enough insight as reader to construe where I fall on the political spectrum. I don’t want to alienate any of my readers if they differ in opinions, however, I can promise that I will never be judgmental. I really do believe that people have the right to their opinions and as long as there is no personal attack its fine. So, if any do want to comment on any of my thoughts, please keep it civil.

I am quite horrified at what I see happening in our government. It has been difficult to watch, every day, every hour, hell, every minute because it seems like it is completely out of control. My husband will be the first to tell you that I am far too empathetic and I couldn’t disagree with that analysis. I have really tried to care less, to feel less, but it is very hard. I have learned that sometimes I have to disconnect from social media and news alerts and so on, because before I know it I’m very overwhelmed and caught between being angry and crying. And as all you spoonies know, those really powerful, draining, emotions take a toll on the whole person. But in recent months I am finding it harder and harder to deal with a United States that I do not recognize. I find it harder and harder to accept that the man sitting in that White House is, in fact, our President.

A little back ground on me that I don’t believe I have shared before: I once had a different blog on race. I have been trying to finish my Anthropology degree for almost 20yrs. In those 20yrs, the focus of my study has been race and disease. I am pretty obsessed with both my philosophy on race is that it doesn’t exist. That it is a man made construct that was supposed to help in the classification of man, the way they did with other species of animals, and which failed miserably because we are not breeds of animals. I feel very strongly that continuing to hang on to these archaic ideas of race that only succeeded in dividing humanity, will destroy us. So when I see what is happening in the White House, and how the leader of our country is continually seeking to pit one group against the other, whether Democrat and Republican or Black and White, it angers and upsets me. The world would be a much better place without this hate.

Maybe if it were only that, only this rampant desire for division, I might be able to compartmentalize and just continue my daily routine. But from our natural resources to our children’s health care, this current administration seems intent on toppling the efforts of every man/women before them, including Republican Presidents and it horrifies me. I believe in science, I believe that if we do not make an effort to take care of our planet that the planet will die. I also believe there should be a universal health care system in place because health is not a luxury and when you have a healthier population you eventually will have less taxing costs on health care. I also feel that education is not a luxury either. Children everywhere should have access to good, quality education. They have an amazing education system in Finland- who insists that they did not come up with it, but used the United States as its model for their education and there is no such thing as private education in Finland. All the children there receive excellent educations, whether their parents are wealthy and elite or work more humble jobs and are of modest means. They are not divided either, meaning that the children of the Prime Minister of Finland could go to school with the children of a local store owner. No one is made to feel left out and no receives subpar education because of their income status. Finland ranks number one in terms of education and how their students perform in college afterwards.

I wish it ended there with our administration, but it doesn’t. Caught up in the whole health care and insurance chaos is the fight over opioids and what I am not afraid to call the hysteria, surrounding it. It isn’t lightly I choose that word, hysteria, either. I know that many have died from opioid misuse and over-dose but I also firmly believe that the statistics used to support this idea of an opioid crisis have been damaged by including fentanyl and heroine over-dose, which the CDC has not denied and which spokes officials have said that they did not want to “dilute the message” of the dangers of opioid use. Now, as someone who uses opioids to get through a day and now worries on a very regular basis that it might be taken away, I’d like to say that I know the risks and dangers of opioids, but I also know my life without them. I could barely function without them and my doctors tried every conceivable way to make me comfortable so I could work and engage in my life. It didn’t work. These drugs have given me a semblance of my life back. My life will never be as it was. I am never at a zero-pain level and even with them I hover between 4-7 any given day. I have also read the stories of many, many lives that ended far too early, by their own hand because they were denied their medication. These are lives lost because no one wants to hear the cries of people living in day-to-day pain, because these doctors don’t know what to do and worse yet, they take these drugs away from people in incomprehensible pain with little more directive than “Accept your pain.” I will not deny that opioids are not the best thing for me or anyone, but until someone figures out an alternative medicine that will not cause the same side effects, I think I have the right to live the best, pain-free life possible.

As always, these are my opinions. I appreciate every one of you who takes the time to read and I hope that I have, in some way, helped you. I will be back soon, and back on topic. The hubby and I are planning on some much needed time together.

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