As some of y’all might know, I have a few things wrong with me. My body is slowly but surely failing and my mind has been miswired for quite a long time. For most of my life though, I’ve been pretty hale and hearty. I mean, I’ve done okay for someone who’s been fighting the good fight since her teens. Yeah, I’ve schlepped through life with chronic ailments, but they’ve been bearable. It wasn’t until about… oh, three? four? years ago that my body just completely went bonkers and I became completely disabled — as in unable to do much of anything other than stare at the computer screen — watching videos — or do things with my hands (like knit or type). And even doing things with my hands is tiring. I used to knit a lot, but now I’m only good for an hour or so at knitting and typing things takes a lot out of me. I have my good days, but lately… well, there haven’t been as many of those. >_< Probably because it’s Spring and Spring brings pollen so I’ve got the whole allergy thing going. Anway, I’m not on disability because my government, in their infinite wisdom, believes that because I’ve done jobs in the past, I can do them again (I’m not sure why that works for them, but what can you do?). After the seventh time of applying for disability, I got tired of the bureaucracy and just gave up. That doesn’t negate the fact that I am, indeed, unable to work. Hence, disabled. I’m just lucky enough to have an understanding husband.
But here’s the thing, dear reader, my mind completely tells me — all of the time — that I cannot possibly be as sick as I am. That I’m faking it somehow, for some weird reason, and I just need to carry my happy ass off of the couch and stop bumming about. This is my own mind telling me this. Like, nearly every day. It’s like Impostor Syndrome in reverse.
Impostor Syndrome, for those who don’t know, is when someone is successful, but they believe that they are inadequate and incompetent, or even a failure. This feeling persists even when presented with evidence that they are indeed quite skilled and intelligent. They dismiss any contrary evidence of their success as luck or coincidence and deflect their accomplishments onto anything or anyone but themselves. I feel sometimes like this is what’s happening with my disability but in reverse. Like, I know that I can’t do things. I do. But there’s a part of me that just can’t accept it, and keeps telling me that I’m not disabled — that I can’t possibly be as sick as I am — because how can that have happened? You know? I mean, WTF, body? Not even three years ago, I was doing okay. I had plans! Plans! How did this even happen? And that bit of my brain keeps yelling at me to stop being a lazy bum and get up! Just get up! Do something! Of course, whenever I give into that bit of my brain, I totally overexert myself and do myself damage, but it’s really difficult to ignore this insistent voice. Because that nagging bit of my mind keeps insisting that eventually everyone else will figure it out too, and I’ll be exposed for the fraud I am. So I should just, you know, stop playing sick and just get up and… do something.
Weird, right? The strange thing is, even though I recognize this is happening, I haven’t found a way to stop it. And sometimes is really difficult to ignore that stupid voice. Logically, I know that my body can’t do what my mind wants it to do, as shown by the fact that I often will overextend and end up having to recuperate after giving in to its demands. Logically I know shouldn’t give in and should work within my body’s limits. But when it comes to a miswired brain, logic doesn’t always help. The good thing is, that it’s only a part of my brain that keeps telling me this. The rest of my brain is pretty good at quelling that part — most of the time. But it’s like that annoying fly that you can’t swat away. It’s small, but persistent. And annoying. Very, very annoying.
Stupid brain. ^_^