Atlas / Autoimmune / Hashimoto's / Healing / Tigers

Fighting the Invisible Monster

I am really kicking my own ass right now.

Maybe someday I will recover enough of my brain to spill the thoughts I’ve collected about Hashimoto’s stealing my ability to communicate.  In my heart, I have always been a writer, and as this illness settled in to my body it slowly snuffed out my ability to put words together in the way that I like to read them.  I have written a bunch of blog posts this year that I never published – they are garbled and devoid of emotion and written in someone else’s voice.  I hate that voice.  I don’t want to share it.

Stupid sick voice.

Still my mind wanders, mostly late at night while I should be dreaming.  Beautiful, fleeting, poignant thoughts come and go.  If I were to wake and write them down, the insomnia that would follow would do me in.  So I lay with them in a half-waking meditative state and wonder where they go.

Fighting the Invisible Monster | Living with Hashimotos | Two Kids and A Food Snob

I’ve been slipping away for weeks now.  Hovering on the edge, feeling the invisible monster creep in.

I got this, I’m fine.  I know what to do.

I get religious with supplements, tighten up my food, go to bed early.  But it’s not enough.  It all goes Flowers for Algernon on me and I feel my health slip away.  I loose my coordination.  I can’t cook.  I can’t leave the house. Everything hurts.  There are not enough hours to fill my need for sleep.

We tell the kids that I’m sick.  They think I have the flu.

I stay in bed, listening to my beautiful life go on without me and try to figure out where I went wrong.

Was it gluten exposure when we ate out?  Maybe I don’t really tolerate eggs and almonds.  Did I miss a thyroid pill?  Did I change my supplements?  The kids haven’t been sleeping well, could night waking have brought this on? 

Having to shoulder the weight of responsibility on top of the illness itself is more than I can take and I can’t hold the tears.  I cry until sleep comes.

I wake some hours later, but my eyes will not open.  My body will not move.  Pearl lovingly assaults my face with a plastic Bryer horse.

“Here, Mama.  We play horses.  I brought you your horse.  Wake up, Mama.”

“Thank you, Baby.  Mama can’t play right now.  Can we play later?  Maybe Daddy can play?”

“No, Mama. YouYouYouYOU.  You play horses with me.”

My husband comes for her.  She screams.  I remind myself that investing in rest today will allow me to be a good mother tomorrow.  But mostly, I hate today.  I hate the illness.  I hate my body’s refusal to fall in line.  I hate having to spend days in bed when I could spend them with the people I love.

Laying in bed with nothing but anger is toxic.  When I can’t stand it anymore, I get up and shower.  It takes all the energy that I have, and I need to sit down.

I find a get well soon card that Atlas made and slipped under the door.  My sweet, sensitive boy who carries the weight of the world on his shoulders.  I say a prayer that these days don’t add to his load.  He’s playing in a basketball game, the house is silent.  I hate that I’m not with them.

I shuffle slowly down the stairs. Past the guest room with its mountain of unfolded laundry, past the breakfast dishes still on the table.  I can’t do anything about them, so I pretend they don’t exist.  But there is bone broth in the fridge.  I say another prayer that it will pull me out of this place.

I eat the soup, take the supplements.  I have a project due in two days.  I try to work, but I cannot organize my thoughts.  Work will have to wait.  I force myself to wash dishes.

In the end, it’s always just me and the food and the dishes.

Fighting the invisible monster.

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