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How are you really?

So the biggest thing I have found since being diagnosed is the number of people who ask “How are you going?”

My response is generally the same! “I’m good thank you, doing well! We’ve just added this to the list of life and things we have to deal with and just ticking it off as we go!”. Really to me there is no point in getting upset, depressed or worrying about it at all. Given that it’s something out of my control! Anyone who generally knows me knows, I take quite a bit in my stride and don’t let it phase me too much but can be overbearingly controlling and routine when it comes to things we can control in life! A good example is I get grumpy with Hubby if he drives a different way to me when we are taking Brady to school! I drive the same way everyday as I believe that is the quickest way, I can control that and I can control the way he drives by KINDLY advising him he’s going the wrong way!

So the best so far was sitting in the genetic counsellor’s room and her asking “So how are you going? How are you coping with everything?” My response was as I mentioned above! There was an awkward silence and she was just staring at me. I looked at Hubby who was looking at me with raised eyebrows both of us thinking what is going on. She looked at me again, came closer and said “So how are you really doing?” I was shocked and looked at Hubby waiting for him to help me out clearly I hadn’t understood the question or perhaps I had answered wrong! “What do you mean? I just told you how I am?”. “It’s ok to not be ok! You don’t have to pretend to be ok in here, you can tell me anything I am here to help you, you don’t have to be ok about anything you are dealing with!” I couldn’t help but laugh and then I had to look at her and look straight in the eye to show that what I was about to say was 100% legit. “I’m actually perfectly fine, I am more than ok! This is not the first time I have dealt with setbacks in my life and I think I have a pretty good grasp on how to not let it bother me and get on with life, The way I see it I have two options! I can be positive, look at this as just a bump in the road and get on with my life, or I could sit here in your office and be rocking in the corner and then probably not ok! I definitely choose to not be in the corner rocking!” and whilst you’re looking at me like that I just need to add “No I’m not in denial! I’m 100% ok!! I’m still not sure she believed me but I was grateful to get out of there! I came away thinking perhaps there is something wrong with me (do I have no feelings LOL).

I then had the GP ask me the exact same thing 3 days later. Only instead of her saying it’s ok to not be ok, she said it’s ok for life to feel a little wonky from time to time and if I feel wonky at all to go back and see her! After giving her the same response and then thinking to myself …. Things have not been a little wonky for me since I was probably 12 months old learning to walk.. That’s when it’s really wonky! Time scale may be out for that though as I don’t believe I would have walked early I definitely would have been a late starter as I really hate walking now LOL. But I kept thinking is this how people actually become depressed or struggle mentally? Does it all start because they start doubting how good they feel or are able to deal with things positively then professionals or others make them question themselves?

I completely understand that everyone needs to ask the question and with everything around depression these days I agree that it should be asked, I also believe that it is ok to not be ok (although my brain doesn’t really allow me to understand how people may feel that way!). I just don’t think it should be questioned or create an awkward silence when someone is expecting that you would not be ok and you are perfectly fine!

This caused some doubts for myself, I won’t lie. Am I not human because I have not fallen in a heap and unable to get on with life? I had this discussion with my CF Physio who knows me really well! Is there something wrong with my brain that has made me immune to feel anything when it comes to a bad card so to speak! Is it because to me I have faced the worst day of my life as mentioned previously (Losing my Brother) and I survived so now everything else is a walk in the park and sometimes with just a little rain? So all you need is an umbrella? I don’t know why and I certainly have no explanation as to how/why I am so positive when it comes to bumps in the road but I’m awfully glad that I am! Yes I question myself sometimes why aren’t I rocking in a corner thinking FML but I’m not! Every day I wake I am grateful that I am breathing and can wake up! Everything on top of that is just an added bonus! Occasionally the bonus isn’t so great but hey I’m still breathing so that is the best outcome! CF and Cancer!! I’ve got this!! And be fucked if I haven’t then I won’t be breathing anymore and I’m surprisingly OK with that too (maybe because my thoughts are that strong I don’t believe that will be happening anytime in the next 20 odd years, or at this rate my body will definitely give up before my mind!)!!

 

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I do want to stress my blog is only relevant to how I feel at the time and everyone has their own individual journey’s!! It is important that when a health professional or a friend checks in with you and asks “are you ok?” that you know you can be honest and let them know you are finding it hard, and you can ask for help.   A problem shared is a problem halved!!

Comments

Verne Larkins
October 16, 2017 at 5:47 am

How true this resonates. If you tell people you are ok and doing fine when you are battling a bump in the road, it is not what they want to hear. I too find it amazing that people expect drama and some will even create it from any small snippet you give them, just to feed their need to dramatize your illness. I hope this makes sense. At times you are made to feel bad or question yourself when you tell people that you are fine, ok, doing good thanks, or any other positive response you choose to use. I wonder sometimes if they want to be the one that you confide in so they can say, “oh no, their not doing good at all, they told me blah blah blah”.
There is enough negative things happening in the world, and yes at times we do get frustrated with the cards we are dealt, but it is ok to be ok with it, especially as you say, some things you just have no control over, so trying to fix what you can’t control is just a waste of energy, better spent having fun and embracing life.



Shelley Scott
October 16, 2017 at 11:01 am

I love your blogs Cemon. You are so open and honest and you give me inspiration and help me to get my priorities in line. You are an awesome lady!



AJ
October 16, 2017 at 12:49 pm

I know you well Cemon and it is ok to be ok too. I think it’s great I know when I had a health scare I got the same reaction from some people wondering why you don’t just fall in a heap?. It because you’re too strong and you know sulking and thinking poor me just isn’t going to help y ou anyway. You have got this and you will beat It, you know it I know it and anyone else that really knows you knows it too. Only the good die young so your safe well into your 80’s 😉😘 I had to laugh reading about learning to walk.. the Cemon I know couldn’t walk across the road to buy lunch but that’s why we love you because you’re you.
Stay strong you’ve got this xx👊



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