"Wait, what? I can't tell if you're joking or
"I'm serious. I really do have to take steroids for the
rest of my life."
"But, you don't look like you're on roids!"
It's always interesting seeing how people respond to my
medical alert bracelet. I actually use several
but they all say something along
the lines of "ALERT: Adrenal Insufficiency. Steroid Dependent." And
I'm glad I don't look like I'm on a massive amount of steroids! Overdose of my
drugs are NOT fun. Instant weight gain, emotional instability, unmanageable appetite...
yeah, if you don't need to be on my drugs, stay away from them! I have to put
up with the negative aspects of them because they really do sustain my life.
And if I'm on the correct dose, I need not worry about the negative side
The interesting thing for people to grasp is the fact that I
don't look diseased. How can I live with this incurable auto-immune disease but
look perfectly normal? The more astute observers notice me taking pills
multiple times a day and never being far from my water bottle or healthy snacks
(I still have hypoglycemic episodes
). Sometimes I am plagued with a sudden
onset of pain that is hard to mask or ignore. If you manage to catch a glimpse
of me at that moment, you can see the pain across my face. A co-worker caught
me in one of those moments. He immediately asked me if I was ok. I chuckled and
said yes and sadly replied that at times I just get huge pain that happens
quickly and fades. I have had it checked out with multiple doctors and they
said I was fine. I could tell he didn't believe me and was slightly concerned.
He asked me the next day if I was feeling better, which got other co-workers
concerned. "Wait, are you sick?"
How should I answer that? Well, yes, of course I'm sick. I
will be diseased for life and will never come off my medicine. How about the
other extreme? Uh, no, of course I'm not sick. Do I look sick? Of course not,
I'm perfectly healthy. I seem to love my black and white absolutes. I swing
from one extreme to the other. But real life isn't black and white. I am both
sick and healthy, simultaneously.
I won't lie. Life is sometimes more challenging with this
darn disease. My stubbornness has carried me through most obstacles, but at
times I am reminded that I cannot do everything. I definitely ran out of spoons
at 4 pm yesterday and was in bed asleep by 9:30pm. It sucked having to cancel
plans and tell people that I could not spend time with them. But life is always
about choices. Even a person without Addison's cannot accomplish everything
that they wanted to do every single day.
PS- One week until my half marathon
. I haven't been able to train as regularly as I would have liked so I'm hoping the fact that I could race 9 miles
a month ago will allow me to run 13.1 miles in a week. I will be very pro-active about increasing my medicine and I just hope my disease behaves. Although I can handle setbacks after triumphs
, I would rather have this next story just be a triumph. I'll be sure to let y'all know how it goes
|Here are three of my medical alerts. If you see someone wearing something with this symbol, it means they have a medical condition. Also, my bracelet in the bottom right has the word "Hope" attached. That is to constantly remind me although my disease will never go away, I must never loose hope. I am clearly alive.|
Labels: After College, Steroids