When Your Depression Is Invalidated

One of the worst feelings you can experience as a chronically ill person is invalidation. It’s not necessarily that others don’t believe you (although that is also a tremendous problem and a discussion for another time), but that they either don’t see or don’t understand how much your illness(es) impact your daily life. Especially when mental health plays a role in your battles.

And what makes it even more frustrating? When that invalidation comes from healthcare professionals. When, to their eyes, you “don’t look sick” enough or you don’t have “enough” chronic illnesses or you’re “too young” (no matter how thick your medical chart) to warrant feeling depressed.

I have struggled with depression for a year and a half now, starting when infertility problems really came to the forefront of my life. But those issues were usurped by far more serious problems. Continue reading “When Your Depression Is Invalidated”

Share Your World: May 29, 2017

This will be a weekly post of the most random of random questions to answer- to share my world! Thanks to Cee’s blog for being the brainchild behind this!

What is the most famous landmark or building you have ever seen? I have no idea. I’ve been to Europe, the U.K., Ireland, and all over the U.S. I’ve seen more famous landmarks than I could probably name. But if I had to pick one, even though I have an intense dislike for it, it would have to be the Grand Canyon. There really aren’t words to describe what comes over you when you step up to that ledge for the first time. 19th-century American explorer John Wesley Powell put it this way:

“The wonders of the Grand Canyon cannot be adequately represented in symbols of speech, nor by speech itself. The resources of the graphic art are taxed beyond their powers in attempting to portray its features. Language and illustration combined must fail.”     John Wesley Powell

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My very first view of the Grand Canyon, March 2013

Continue reading “Share Your World: May 29, 2017”

The Unpredictability of POTS

I was diagnosed with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) about four months ago. (Is that all? Really? *checks calendar* Blast it all. This has been the longest four months of my life.)

In a stroke of luck, my diagnosis came only a month or so after the onset of symptoms, which I inadvertently described some of here. But part of me wonders if this wasn’t the beginning, albeit still only a few weeks before things really took a more permanent turn for the worse. But since I knew what I was looking for, having heard of POTS before and being familiar with the symptoms, I went straight for the best. In another stroke of luck, the healthcare system where I receive all my care just so happens to be an autonomic center, with the most cutting edge testing available (one test I had is only performed at this center.) My cardiologist is none other than the medical director of the syncope center. So with him taking the reins, I got my diagnosis in record time.

But have I improved at all?

Continue reading “The Unpredictability of POTS”

Share Your World: May 22, 2017

This will be a weekly post of the most random of random questions to answer- to share my world! Thanks to Cee’s blog for being the brainchild behind this!

What one thing have you not done that you really want to do? Have children. This is a painful struggle we’ve been dealing with for over three years due to major health issues on my part.

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Everything in our baby box…just waiting…yes, we love Doctor Who.

Continue reading “Share Your World: May 22, 2017”

Rebellion Gone Wrong

I’m not quite sure I’ve gone this long without updating my blog before, even after my multiple surgeries last year. This week has been a weird one, though, and I just haven’t felt like writing. Probably because of my rebellion that kind of ended up going sideways.

Hubby was out of town presenting at an emergency medicine conference in Orlando, so I’ve been alone with the cats all week. They’re used to me being home all the time, but not to him being gone. Surprisingly, I didn’t oversleep any of those days, except perhaps today.

But last week, I just suddenly got so sick of being sick. I wanted to pretend that I was normal. Or maybe I was trying to convince myself that I’m not as sick as I appear to be. So I rebelled.

Fitness GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Turns out, stuff like that backfires.

Loki GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Continue reading “Rebellion Gone Wrong”

Share Your World: May 15, 2017

This will be a weekly post of the most random of random questions to answer- to share my world! Thanks to Cee’s blog for being the brainchild behind this!

How many languages do you you speak? Two. Like the vast majority of American kids, I took Spanish in high school, but I don’t remember enough to really speak it. I especially realized this when my husband and I traveled to Honduras in 2012 to meet our sponsor child through Compassion International, Heybi. When we met, I did ok to start but then got nervous and promptly forgot all the Spanish I knew. Thank goodness we had personal translators with us. I remember at one point, the translator had gone to the bathroom, and I tried, out of necessity, to say something to Heybi’s mother and I conjugated the verb wrong (not a big deal; I said “No necesitan” instead of “No necesitamos.”) I corrected myself and managed to mumble a “Lo siento,” but she just smiled, chuckled, and hugged me for trying.

And I speak fluent cat. Meow.

I guess I dabbled in ASL (American Sign Language) as a child; I used to be able to sign the Pledge of Allegiance. I remember the alphabet and the sign for “flag.” And I can sign the following (known as “Awesome God/Omega”) from my time in a Christian vocal group in college: “Our God is an awesome God; He reigns from heaven above; With wisdom, power, and love, our God is an awesome God. May the grace of our Lord be with you now and always, may you stay blameless ’til He comes. May the love of our Lord be with you now and always, may you stay blameless ’til He comes.” To see the song, view the following video from a “Beauty and the Geek” chapel event in February 2007. Bonus points if you can find me, lol.

Continue reading “Share Your World: May 15, 2017”

Maybe This Time…

There are many days on the calendar that are a challenge for infertile women. Christmas for sure, when all you want is to see the new little stocking hanging with the others for the first time. Halloween is despised, as you throw up your hands at seeing one more infant in a cuddly, warm lion costume. (Last year I sat in the bedroom with earphones on while my husband passed out the candy.)

But there is no holiday out there that stings so badly as the one that singles out the fact that you are not a mother: Mother’s Day. A day just like any other for those who aren’t part of the exclusive mom club (although loving on our own mothers takes the sting out to a degree.)

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My mother and mother-in-law are the best I could ask for!

And is it really necessary for every single email on this particular day to be about Mother’s Day? Happy Mother’s Day! Because you’re an awesome mother, buy something from New York and Company, REI, Athleta, DaySpring, UncommonGoods, Wayfair, Ancestry.com, Kohl’s, and freaking Pro Compression Socks!

But I digress.

Mothers work hard to keep their families on the go day after day and should be lauded for it. Among dozens of other tasks, whether it’s packing lunches, doing countless loads of laundry, cooking dinner, driving to and from school/soccer/music lessons/birthday parties/sleepovers/etc and making sure the bath is done with enough time for a story before bed, mothers get it done.

I want to work hard for my family, too. Continue reading “Maybe This Time…”