Today I Missed My Chronic Illness Clues

July 06, 2016

Today has been one of those days. One of those days when the reality of life with a chronic illness rears it's ugly head. When even the clues right in front of you just don't add up.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

The day started well enough.
I got up. Win!
I coffeed.
I facebooked.
I breakfasted.
I even showered. Double win!
I was ready to face the day. Well, so I thought.

Up to the local shops I went. Petrol was still cheap, so I filled up.

There were just a few things on my shopping was achievable. Well. It should have been. I had just had 3 glorious days filled with fun and adventure over the weekend. And then I had spent yesterday recovering, in my pjs all day, watching Scandal and doing a puzzle. On paper, today should have been a shoe in. No questions asked. But hey, I have a chronic illness and sometimes I miss the clues right in front of me.

I arrived at the local shops to find parking. All the disabled spots were gone. I inwardly cringed. "It would have been nice to be able to get one of them," I unusually thought. There was clue number 1.

Ok, logistics, I need to hit up the pharmacy. The discount pharmacy is up the hill 200m or so. I might instead just go to the more expensive one inside the shopping complex. Clue number 2.

I pick out some flowers, and head into the fruit and vegetable store. I grab the first items that come to me, not stopping to weigh up the cost. Clue number 3.

The daze has come over me by the time I have finished at the fruit shop. I struggle to have a conversation with the cashier. Clue number 4.

I wander up to the supermarket. Only 3 things on my list. I wander aimlessly up and down the aisles trying to find those items. I have to go back and do the first aisle a second time to find the item I was looking for. Finally I find it. I walk out with two of the items not bothering to make a substitution for the third. Clue number 5.

My eyes are beginning to burn. I feel like I could close them for a very long time. Just one last stop. The pharmacy for the tape for my now dodgy thumb that just keeps popping in and out of place. I should probably go to the doctor/physio/chiro for it, but I am so over needing to explain new and random symptoms my body keeps doing. Instead for the moment tape will do. By this stage my eyes are beginning to water. My mind is a fuzzy mess. Clue number 6.

I stop at the coffee shop for my usual coffee. I stare and pause for what seems like forever at the cashier when she asks whether I want sugar. By this point I don't even want a coffee. Clue number 7.

I balance coffee in one hand, trolley with the other, wishing the hundred metres between me and the car would disappear. Or I would run into someone who would just take my groceries over to my car. I walk over half leaning/half holding on for dear life to the trolley. Clue number 8.

I collapse into the car. Groceries are in, trolley is returned to the bay. I just want to sit with my eyes closed for a moment. A car is waiting to take my parking spot. I reluctantly leave. A moment more I silently beg. Clue number 9.

I drive, constantly second guessing myself, as I wind through the back streets to make it back onto the main road. Praying that God would protect me on the drive home. Clue number 10.

I make it back home. The groceries are left in a lingering trail somewhere between the car and the kitchen. My coffee is left half abandoned on the bench. Clue number 11. To abandon coffee...that's saying something.

I collapse in bed. Spent. In tears. Clue number 12.

As I lie in bed, nauseous, in pain, with burning eyes and a foggy brain. I know I shouldn't have gone to the shops today. But somehow, it's not until the clues of this disease and the symptom upon symptom build up that you can actually tell what your body is doing. Sometimes, it is just so not what it seems or what you expect. Someday's this disease just rears its ugly head....and there is not a thing you can do about it.

I have an invisible illness. Yet, if I ran into you at any point today and you knew me. You would be able to see my illness. There would have been twelve clues right in front of you. Sometimes you just need to stop and look.

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  1. What a great post! I'd never thought to look closer at these things but yes, they are there. I think though that in the moment our minds are so foggy that we can't see it. A bit like 'love is blind', so is chronic illness. We are often blind to our subtle needs.
    I never go shopping on my own now. I've abandoned the trolley too many times. Now I go with hubby, do what I can then go and sit in the cafe while he finishes up. If I can't do that, then I order online and have it delivered.
    Take care of yourself and thanks for the life lesson.
    Cath xx

    1. I am such a big fan of online shopping these days! Love it!
      Thank you! I don't think I learnt the lesson after a busy Sunday yesterday too, when the clues just kept popping up, but I chose to ignore them! One day I might get it!

  2. Oh man sending you love. I know what its like to "miss the clues" all to well. Its so hard to even know what you body MIGHT be able to tolerate since chronic illness can ebb and flow in terms of what you can even tolerate doing in just an hour. Great post, its definitely shows how frustrating it is to live a simple day when your body is malfunctioning. Hope today is better!!

    1. Thank you!
      I am often so scared that I am not going to be able to read my body. It changes so much! I might feel OK momentarily when I wake up, then an hour later I am back in bed! I have had a few better days since, thankfully!!!

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