When My Doctor Said, 'What Do You Do All Day?'


After months of worrying about my abnormal blood work, I finally made it to a hematologist oncologist. We did the normal history and he asked me questions… but then he said, “so do you exercise a lot?” I paused. A brief moment later I decided to go with the truth, “I’m pretty much unable to.”

He looked up from his papers with a questioning look on his face.

“What do you do all day?” he said.

Maybe I’m overdramatic. Maybe I’m too sensitive. But it was almost like my life flashed before my eyes. I told him, “I… sleep.”

Currently, I’m at a point where I sleep for about 16 hours… sometimes longer, sometimes shorter.

I am in so much pain and I am so fatigued that I truly can’t get out of bed. I’m not lazy. I have a 4.0 GPA. (Not much of a social life but that can kind of comes with the chronic illness territory). I’m not at an unhealthy weight.

I’m definitely not faking. It shows in my blood work. If I had the choice… I would be doing all the sports and always out with friends. If I had the choice I wouldn’t be isolated from being in fear of sickness. If I had the choice I wouldn’t be in bed.

I hate it. I hate it. I hate it. And I hate it even more when the people who ask me the mean/snarky/offensive questions are often doctors. Doctors are supposed to care, they’re supposed to believe their patients and guide them to diagnoses and treatments.

So whether you’re a doctor, a friend, or a stranger… you gotta know that not being able to get out of bed is not a choice I made; it was forced upon me.

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Thinkstock photo by andrei_r


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