How are you feeling today?
Probably the single most important question that I wish family members would ask me on a daily basis.
Do you ever have days when you are hurting, or are battling other aspects of your continuing CES nightmare, where the only people to ask you how you are doing that day are your online CES friends or other friends outside of your family?
If you have been battling CES for years, do you sometimes feel like people in your family have somehow forgotten that you are hurt?
Do you sometimes get the impression that your family is somehow annoyed with your continuing health problems?
I’m no Psychologist, but I get these feelings all the time in my own battle with CES.
Like most of you, my days are a constant, never-ending struggle. Whether it be battles with chronic pain, difficulties walking, bowel issues, etc… it truly never ends.
I cannot remember the last day that I felt 100% completely “normal”. This is most likely due to the fact that I have been like this since 1999.
Most days, during the school year, I am home alone for the majority of the day while my wife is at work and my son is at school. As such, I fight my daily CES battles alone. Most days, my family will come home and we will discuss the wife and kids days as we eat dinner. I usually have nothing to add to the conversation, in that most days I do nothing of note other than trying to keep the house clean, pay bills, do laundry, etc. My daily “job” is fighting the effects of CES. Talk about a depressing job!
Most days, no one asks me how I am doing physically, or mentally.
They all know that I am in near constant pain, that I have bowel problems, that I have trouble walking, and that I have battled crippling Depression for years.
Yet most days, the only inquiries I get as to how I am doing, come from my fellow CES sufferers or from a small group of online friends who have been reading my humor blog for years.
I’m a walking contradiction.
On one hand, I’m a very private person when it comes to my health issues. I really don’t like talking about them in person, with anyone. I don’t really walk around just volunteering information about what particular health issues are giving me problems on any particular day. Bottom line: I don’t like talking about my CES.
On the other hand, I have a tremendous need to know that people still care about how I am doing. Even though I don’t like talking about my CES struggles, I want those around me to at least ask me how I am doing. This at least reinforces the knowledge that people care.
I know my family loves me more than anything. I know they care about my health and about how I am doing.
I think that after so many long years, they have just gotten NUMB to the whole CES nightmare. Day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after year of the same old nightmare, just gets old after awhile.
They can ask me how I am doing on any particular day and they would most likely get the same answer. “I’m hurting”.
There is nothing they can do to alleviate my pain, nothing they can do to help me walk better, and nothing they can do for the bowel issues.
I would bet this leads my family members to feel totally powerless.
So, after so many years, my health is just what it is. I believe they think there’s no need to ask me how I am feeling every day. They already know what the answer will be.
But, that doesn’t mean that I still don’t desperately want loved ones to ask me.
CES is lonely enough as it is. It does help us immensely to know that people in our families still care about how we are feeling on any given day.
So, how are YOU feeling today?