Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Beautiful Beyond Description- Being Comfortable in My Chronic Illness Skin

There is thick crust in the corners of my eyes as I wrangle myself out of bed at 3:30AM. I can't sleep. Again. I'm so tired...bone deep exhaustion and yet sleep is terribly elusive. I tiptoe to the bathroom the best I can with aching joints and stiffness beyond my years, not wanting to wake my sleeping husband. After staring at a blinking clock for over an hour, I can't stand it anymore. I have to get up. I want to crawl out of my own skin. After using the bathroom, wrapping myself in a blanket, and rubbing the sleep from my eyes, I go upstairs and turn on a dim light as not to disturb anyone. The soft glow of my computer screen turns my face into a pale glow, ghost like. And I write.

This is life now. This is me. This is the unpredictable yet predictable daily struggle with a chronic illness. This is where I am left after Lyme Disease and co-infections have redefined my life to a before/after. I am me but not me. I am ugly and beautiful. I am exhausted but wide awake. I hate myself and yet I am totally in love with me. I struggle and I persevere. I lose friends but I gain a tribe.

I took one of those silly online quizzes the other day and my results said I was "An Optimist." I smiled when the description revealed itself because it was accurate (for once!)...I am an optimist. I may play ping pong in my brain with thoughts of despair and triumph, but ultimately I am learning to see the silver lining on a daily basis. I am teaching myself to be confident in this new Chronic Lyme Disease skin I wear. Despite the many challenging things I face each day, even with dark circles under my eyes, and my slow moving, creaky body, I am beautiful. Beautiful Beyond Description.


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