How are you feeling? I never thought I’d hate a question more. Doesn’t it seem like EVERYONE asks you that question when you have a chronic illness. I have my standard answer to people which is, “I’m good”. I mean what else are you going to say. Truth is half the people that ask the question don’t even want to know the real answer anyway. I don’t even mean that in a mean way, it’s just people are self absorbed and those acquaintances don’t know how to react if you answered honestly. People who don’t walk in your shoes don’t know what your life is like.
I use to have the most negative friend. Years ago we parted ways over a fight where I unleashed 20 years of frustration. I know that my actions were wrong in the actual fight but I couldn’t take the frustration of the friendship anymore. She was a perfect example of the person who didn’t get what it was like to live with a chronic disease. She was a hypochondriac. She’d call me to complain that everything hurt from the top of her head to her pinky toe. I have MS and didn’t complain like that. If I said I was tired she was tired. If I said I was having a relapse she’d discuss her neurosis with her gall bladder surgery that occurred two years prior. It was like a competition of diseases. She was a good person but definitely one of those self absorbed people. I remember going to see a concert in the city, Duran Duran actually. I had my cane at this point and was in a handicap section to sit as needed. She left me most of the time to stand in a better spot with other people leaving me alone. At the end of the concert walking out of the park she was walking in front of me a little way, not because she was mad at me, because she walked fast. I couldn’t walk fast and she didn’t care enough to walk slower, to walk with me or to make sure I was ok. It was the end of a long night and my legs were exhausted walking was difficult by then. Each time I tripped and caught myself watching her back in front of me I cursed under my breath. That was the day I knew that the friendship was done just took another 3 years for that final fight. I still even miss her too she was one of my oldest friends. I reached out to her not long ago getting an answer I knew she’d give my fault, I’m the wrong one and I’ll accept that fate. I’m not even upset at that response. She too has been forgiven and I’ve forgiven myself for my wrongful way of ending the friendship. It was hard to give up a friendship of someone I’ve known since I was 16 but I remember that night in the park. The biggest part and challenge in my life is my MS and my friends need some understanding and support. I don’t unburden my frustrations daily to them but simple understanding isn’t too much to ask, is it?