So work, trying to date, and school, have all been huge stressors lately. I thought I was handling things well…until my mom came to town for a visit. Family visiting in general is exhausting, whether I’m traveling to them, or they come to me. I have this doomed sense of obligation that ends up leaving me completely spent within days of their arrival. This trip has been different, because I had the seizure on Sunday an they arrived the next Wednesday.
When my father visits it’s definitely easier. He has lupus, so the gets it on a fundamental level. Some days we go for long walks and sightsee, other days we sit around and do nothing. My mom is different.
Her first night here she laughed and told the story of how I thought I had arthritis when I was 10, but it was just growing pains. Then the story of how she felt bad when I was a teenager and told her my periods were bad and she ignored me, only to later find out I had massive ovarian cysts. Only, she didn’t really feel bad, because she made a snarky comment about how high her pain tolerance is, and how she just couldn’t understand my point of view.
I have an insanely high pain tolerance. When I had my knee surgery in November, they refused to numb the area after because they knew I needed to be in pain so I wouldn’t push myself. They’d witnessed how far I’d push through pain before surgery, and there was a major concern I would mess my knee up after.
Did I have arthritis at 10? No, but I did have Behcet’s symptoms back then. I would have mouthfuls of sores that nobody thought twice about. It’s entirely possible that the pain and irritation in my hands was Behcet’s related, though I’ll conceded it would be odd for the disease to hit that early in life.
I was telling my roommate how frustrated I was today because I woke up with a headache, and I didn’t spend time with my mom and her boyfriend yesterday because I was playing catch up on school work…but there is no way for me to convey how exhausted I am to my mother. Thankfully my dog is being a trooper and reminding me that I need to relax. I went to get a pedicure with my mom a couple of days ago, despite feeling very dizzy and sick, and apparently the dog went absolutely insane the moment I left. Roommate was perplexed because usually he just snuggles up with her once I’m gone and doesn’t even bother looking around for me. I remembered, of course, that I’ve trained him to be in tune with a variety of symptoms related to the Behcet’s and because I left mid health crisis, he was trying to get to me to alert.
In a world where “you don’t look sick,” is one option and, “you look tired,” is the other, it really feels like a lose/lose situation.