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Friday, April 07, 2006

i'm tired

Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance. We've all heard about the five stages of grief, right? It sounds so simple. Get through the first four stages and voila, you've made it! I've learned that it's not quite that simple.

I was diagnosed with Lupus (and maybe Rheumatoid Arthritis) in December 2004. I definitely had the denial thing down pat. It didn't seem real and it wasn't real. I was only 24! I was definitely too young to be hobbling around with my knees aching and my hands hurting too much to diaper my 2 month old baby. "This is just some wierd fluke thing and it's going to go away," I thought. It didn't go away. In fact, it got worse. The medications my doctor tried didn't work and that's when the anger set in.

I was ticked. I wanted to yell, kick, scream, swear, and blame someone. Mostly I blamed myself. If I had not done _____, then this wouldn't have happened to me. If I had just _____, this wouldn't have happened to me. That's when I started bargaining.

If I had done something to make this happen, surely I could bargain with God to get me out of it. I did everything I knew how to do and made every bargain with God I knew how to make. But nothing changed. I was still in pain, still tired all of the time, and I had still had Lupus. I was broken. Guess what came next? Ya, I was depressed.

How could I not be depressed? I hurt all the time, I was tired all of the time, I had done something to make this happen to myself, and God had forsaken me. Depression affects everyone differently, but for me, depression makes me want to sleep all of the time, stay home and wallow in self-pity, and I'm short tempered. After awhile there, I started to come out of the hole and realize (with the help of some great friends) that I would get through this, it wasn't my fault, and that I would be okay.

Ahhhh, Acceptance. It would be smooth sailing from here on out, right? RIGHT?

Oh no! It doesn't work that way. It's all too easy to sink back in and go through all of these stages over and over again! I go through phases of denial fairly often, anger even more often, depression most often, and throw a bit of bargaining in for good measure. Every time a medication fails, I get depressed. Every time I fill my med box with my daily dose of 12+ pills, I get angry.

Today? Today I'm just tired. I'm taking yet another medication and it hasn't worked yet and it makes me nauseated. I'm tired of hurting. I'm tired of being tired. I'm tired of being broken.

I try not to complain. I try to be strong. I try to keep it together. I think I'm failing.

23 comments:

QueenMeadow said...

I'm sorry Alicia :(

I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, I can't imagine coupling that with Lupus :(. I think I'm still in denial and have been for a long time.

I hope your new medication starts working soon.

sheri said...

I'm so sorry :(
I wish I lived close by so I could be of more help. Take your kids for a "you" day. You could sleep or watch silly Lifetime movies the entire time. I hope you're able to find a successful medication really soon.

lackrik said...

((HUGS)).

I'm so sorry. Hope you find something that works soon.

Pamela said...

I'm trying something new right now with my CFS and other issues. I will let you know my results and maybe we can be on the healing end together. I SOOO know what you are going through...it sucks!

Misty said...

(((((HUGS)))))) I wish I could help too! Thinking of you!

The Nag said...

I'm sorry to hear that you have Lupus. The RS president in my ward, who is 25, also has Lupus. She is amazing and reading your comments about how you feel makes me realize how much she, also, goes through.
Good bless.

The Nag said...

Oops. That was supposed to be "God bless".

Meemer said...

My sister has lupus as well. She is a real inspiration for me.

I hope you get feeling better soon.

Katy said...

Have you called Liz?:-)

Sorry, I'm here for ya.

emlouisa said...

I just want to give you a big ole hug right now. I'm so so sorry you feel so awful. I wish there was something I could do for you! Is there? You'd tell me if there was, right?? RIGHT??

I will keep you in my prayers. Know you can call me for anything!

Maine Mom said...

I'm glad you wrote this post. Writing about things we're going through and reaching out to others is good. I hope you know that we (your readers, friends) will be thinking of you and praying for you. I hope today is a good day :-)

ShelahBooksIt said...

I am so sorry!

Stephanie said...

I am so sorry for what you are going through. For what it's worth, you are amazing. Reading your archives shows what a strong person you are, even if it doesn't feel that way right now. My hopes and thoughts are with you.

Jane said...

I am so sorry too! ((hugs))

I will keep you in my prayers. And never stop believing in miracles. Praying for one for you,

Lee said...

I so understand how you are feeling. I had a few weeks of good.. then we are back to the bad again. I am going on almost 9 years since my dx.. I think it gets easier.. or maybe I just prefer the state of denial.
I am learning to talk to people, I want them to be educated on it, I think we need to raise awareness.
You are in my prayers. ((hugs))
Love ya!

Andrea said...

Sending you some hugs!! I can't imagine what your going through. I know a girl who has Lupus, she got it when she was very young...like 17. It was horrible to see her so sick all the time.
Take care!

itybtyfrog said...

I am so sorry for your pain. My mother has Rheumatoid Arthritis (plus several other kinds of arthritis). She has much of the same feelings you do. Who wouldn't! I am wishing you the best. I wish I could change those babies diapers for you, or do anything to help. Keep plugging along. Hopefully things will get better soon.

Rachelle said...

Hugs! I am so sorry you are going through this.

Lei said...

Alicia - I am sorry things are tough. You have endured cycle after cycle, so stay strong! You know this already, but I'll gently remind you that we are not given mroe than we can handle... so you MUST be a pretty able woman. ;)
xoxo

Pamela said...

Alicia~
Can you email me?
pamela@pamelamortonactress.com

Alissa said...

((HUGS!!)) i hope that you can find some relief!!!

Nettie said...

I'm so sorry! I know that feelings of depression are very common when experiencing long term pain. Make sure you tell your doctor about these symptoms as well as your physical ones. He should be concerned about the whole you. May tommorrow be a better day for you!

smartmama said...

so sorry- big hugs-- accepting big giant life altering things does happen overnight- as much as we want it too--give yourself credit