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[personal profile] ashbet
Since DW is taking a while to catch up on my archived entries:

I was in the ER on Monday morning, with what turned out to be a kidney infection. Also picked up a respiratory infection while I was there.

On Tuesday, I took these photos/wrote this post for Facebook, because I felt like it was important -- forgive my semi-feverish rambling, but so many people with invisible illnesses really struggle to be *seen*, so I thought this might help a little bit.

* * *

"But you don't look sick!" is one of the most frustrating phrases to hear, if you're a person who lives with with invisible illness or chronic pain.

Posting these as a direct example -- when you deal with pain and other symptoms every day, many people learn how to cover it up really, really well. But the act of doing so doesn't mean that they aren't genuinely ill.

I'm fighting a combination of kidney infection and respiratory infection in these photos, in addition to Ehlers-Danlos and its myriad bullshit comorbid conditions. I have a fever, and I'm getting hit by the leading edge of a migraine coming on. I feel like death warmed over.

But I *had* to leave the house to take Kira to her eye appointment (they were dilating her eyes, so she couldn't drive), and I chose to look cute and put on makeup because I had a Skype date with Cav planned for this morning, which I was very happy and excited about -- the smile is perfectly genuine!

(FWIW, yesterday, I looked *fucking awful* -- the IV antibiotics and pain meds helped immensely.)

So -- when someone tells you that they're in pain or dealing with an invisible illness... don't judge by appearances, and realize that someone who made an effort today may have only been able to put on pants and leave the house one day this week, so you're seeing them at their best.

(You guys are amazing, and I'm not pointing this at anyone -- but I've dealt with disbelief and dismissal even within my family of origin, and with doctors who couldn't be bothered to deal with a complex patient or a rare disease... and that's an incredibly common experience for people with invisible illnesses -- it happens to almost all of us.)

Thanks for listening -- this is a difficult and painful issue for so many people, and I thought a demonstration might be useful.

On a lighter note, check out Nurse Zuul keeping me company on the pillow in bed <3



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