I’m not sure the date. Nor am sure where to begin.
I’ve been reading. Maya Angelou’s All God’s Children Need Traveling Shoes and Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.
I live in a cloud. I sleep 10-12 hours per day. I tolerate about 4-5 hours of activity. The rest is a complete haze. Not like when you waste time and wonder what happened with your day. No. It’s like my body is wrapped in this grayish fluff of nothingness. Foods taste funny. Beloved music sounds foreign. The sun warms but it lingers in my dermal layers, not penetrating the chill beneath. I have difficulty regulating my body temperature. My mind is one long river of consciousness, not breathing or breaking, just running indescriptively toward someplace unknown. Unorganized. I know that my mind is far from well, because I don’t notice dishes or messes on the floor.
My limbs feel heavy with lead. My fingers and hands being the worst. They don’t fully bend. They don’t fully grasp things. They lose coordination after only a moment of concentration. And they fill my mind with the greatest sense of fatigue.
I don’t know what’s wrong.
Or do I?
The doctors won’t give me antibiotics. They won’t test me for anything else. I’m overweight, so that’s obviously why I feel like crap.
I look like crap. Unrecognizable to myself. Swollen glands high up on the sides of my neck. Short hair, not curling like it used to. Eyes seem a little dim and grey compared to light and hazel. No one to tell me otherwise.
My body is different size and shape than I’ve ever known it to be.
But I didn’t get here from lack of love for my body. Nor did I get here from laziness.
I was carried here by pain. A heaviness in my joints. Terrifying and debilitating migraines. Heaped with tremendous stress, all control was lost.
And as I’ve fiercely defended myself, my right to be body positive, the space to allow my body to become whatever it wanted to be, it did. It speaks in messages so deep that I can only hear it when I quiet my voice and succumb to that unknown void of silence and non-movement. And even here, I’m confused as fuck.
How did those medications change so much of me? Who even am I and what am I doing? Why do I despise chiropractic? I have equal love and spite for my body as a whole. But what are the parts I’m truly loving and what are the parts I spite? And do I truly spite them or am I just mortified at their betrayal of Me. I am thinking it is the latter.
Like any doctor will say, it is not the Lyme itself that makes us ill. It is the body’s response to it. With these things in my body, my immune system tries to love me, tries to keep me in the game, by sending out messengers and fighters to crucify the tiny invaders. But the invaders are smart. They evade and hide. They confuse my body’s messengers and fighters so that they start attacking Me.
Perhaps it makes sense that my Mind itself is confused, as there is confusion within me.
This process cycles. Every 14 or so days. It’s been this way for years, though I have recently felt this tidal wave gaining force and speed, landing me in this place of grey-cloud living.
How about another analogy. Have you ever tried to walk or run through water? With that resistance pressing against every outer cell of your leg, it takes so much extra work to do something which is so simple on land.
My life feels this way. In every moment. Even thinking feels like my brain is sending signals through layers of wet clay.
Perhaps though, like water-runners, one day, I will find that my weakness has been replaced with tremendous strength. Every bit of that strength earned. Accrued currency from this hard work of healing and listening and surviving.
Long having wander’d since, round the earth having wander’d,
Now I face home again, very pleas’d and joyous,
(But where is what I started for so long ago?
And why is it yet unfounded?)
“Facing West from California’s Shores”