I almost feel guilty for not always looking ill.

So after my spring relapse had finally left and I started rejoining the world again, it always takes a little while to get back into the swing of things after a period of illness. It can take a little longer sometimes especially when I’m floored again by an innocuous little comment or an insensitive remark.

MS, “ah my mates mum has got that but she’s got it really bad!” Do I take this as you think my MS doesn’t appear that bad today?   Or is this another back handed compliment?

I almost feel guilty for not always looking ill.

Normally I just shrug comments like that off as a compliment because I put so much effort into treating my MS naturally so when people say I don’t look sick no matter how it’s worded I want the credit for it, not the fact you think I’m ok because I don’t look sick today. Lately I’ve been questioning whether people actually believe I have MS when they make comments like this about me. Just to clarify I don’t really care what they think, well most of the time anyway.

I have come to the conclusion though that their off the cuff remarks no matter how well intended turns out to be my kryptonite just one “you don’t look ill” or “my mates mum has it a lot worse” on my bad days leaves me angry, confused and leaving me doubting the validity of my MS only for a violent muscle spasm like an uncontrollable Miley Cyrus twerk hits hard just to remind me that just because no-one can see MS doesn’t mean it is not real! And even on my good days these….. lets call them anti MS quips can still piss me off as much as MS itself.

I almost feel guilty for not always looking ill.

I can’t be one of those people who introduces his self “Hello I’m Jamie I have MS” in fact I find it leaves me feeling very naked and vulnerable which isn’t my best look, unless I’m in wellies! After all in doing this I would have just told you my weakness and who else exposes their own weakness in such a way?

The anxiety that comes with a chronic illness is rarely understood by anybody unless they have a chronic illness themselves and that’s not me being all wise and philosophical although I am a modern day Socrates, that’s just how it is. With that said the greatest help I often get is when someone really does try to understand and is sympathetic sometimes by only just listening. It really does help!

Some say though that the anxiety associated with MS is not the MS physically causing anxiety itself but the fear from having MS and having to cope with the frightening symptoms many of which worsen over time.

So being judged on the severity scale of ‘your mates mums stage of MS’ especially when it just happens crop in conversation really does add to the anxiety. The sheer fact I’m even out talking to you today means that this is a good day, I very rarely leave the house on bad days so I’m not seen perhaps thats where I’m going wrong? Should I show those who judge the severity of an illness by sight by holding an open house to come view the sick kid?

Again I almost feel guilty for not always looking ill.

My way of dealing with these people in situations like this are and most husbands know how to do this it’s the ability to look interested in what’s being said and nodding in the right places smiling if needed and making the odd grunt at the right time, I’m talking about the ancient man art of “zoning out” the only  husbands that don’t use the “zoning out” technique is newlyweds so they are always in the bedroom no need for words in there, but they will learn it eventually.

The Greedy Fox

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