Sometimes I feel like Sisyphus. I keep trying so hard to get better, and I keep having setbacks. And yet, I know I’m one of the lucky ones.
I’m one of the lucky ones because I’ve seen improvement overall.
So I’m frustrated and grateful, scared and excited, angry and glad, whipping back and forth between different emotions as my physical health changes. I’m so glad I was able to go to a family party yesterday and still feel ok afterwards, but I’m frustrated that I don’t feel up to going out to dinner with friends tonight. I’m glad that I’ll probably feel up to going to a doctor appointment tomorrow, but frustrated that I probably won’t feel up to doing laundry afterwards. I see a bright future, but I wonder if I’ll ever reach it. It’s like the carrot being dangled in front of me. Family, friends, my naturopath… they all say that one day I’ll grab that carrot, but no one says that it will still be crunchy and delicious. Maybe by then it will have gone bad. Instead of working and socializing and living a so-called normal life, I’ll only be able to work a bit and then be too sick to socialize. Maybe I’ll never really be able to date again. Maybe my dream of being able to actually give a solid RSVP to an event is nothing but that: a dream.
Two weeks ago I was feeling pretty good. I had been seeing a lot of improvement since starting a CPAP machine. I was on a new medication. Things were looking up! I was feeling better than I had in ages and I thought it would continue. The pattern was clear: 3-4 days of feeling great, 1-2 days of feeling crappy, and another day of feeling so-so. It wasn’t perfect, but it was a great sign that things would continue to improve. And then that pattern ended. I don’t know why. Technically, nothing changed. I thought I was in transition towards a better stage of health but maybe that wasn’t it, afterall.
I am trying to focus on the positive. I feel so much better than I did two years ago. I feel better than I did even 6 months ago. And I guess that’s the difference between me and Sisyphus: so far, I haven’t had to start over in this most recent journey. I slide backwards, but not completely. That means that the next time I improve, I’m starting from a higher point. It’s not perfect, but I’m grateful for it.
So right now, as the dark clouds are rolling in and my seasonal affective disorder is kicking up, as my body aches and the fatigue is ever-present, as I wonder if I’ll ever reach that carrot of a future, I’m trying very hard to see the last few years for what they’ve been, and be glad that, at least right now, I seem to be done with them.