When people talk about the beginning of their #ChronicIllness journey, they often start with when they were diagnosed. I've done that myself, which often leads people to believe that I didn't get sick until I was an adult and able to do something about the pain I was living with. But the truth is, my journey started when I was 2 years old.
You see that was the first time I was #Raped It wasn't the last time, but that moment was when my #CPTSD started. It is also when the ground work was laid for all the other chronic illnesses I have been diagnosed with since.
In that moment I was taught not to cry when I was in pain. I was taught to never talk about my pain to anyone. I was told that no one would believe me even if I did tell them about my pain (many #Spoonies know this experience all too well). But most importantly I was taught that my pain was meaningless. Rather my pain existed purely for the enjoyment of others.
Nothing that has happened in my adult life has changed these lessons for me. I have found that if I cry when I'm in pain I am dismissed as irrational and exaggerating for attention. I have found that my friends and family start avoiding me when I again start talking about the pain that I live with day and night year round without break or improvement for 40 years. I have found that if my doctors can't find "proof" of my pain in their blood tests or images, then my pain isn't real. And since there is no proof of my pain, clearly it is causing no harm to me, and I should just ignore it so I can get on with my life.
So here I am, 40 years into my journey with no energy to keep moving forward and the world telling me I have so much more to live for when they refuse to sit even for a moment with the pain I can never walk away from. Maybe if they knew how little else there is in my life, how long my journey has been so far, how all consuming my pain is, maybe they would have more compassion for my eagerness to see my journey end.