The Waiting That Comes With Autoimmune Disease
Tom Petty once sang, “The waiting is the hardest part.” If only that was the case with autoimmune disorders. Although, there is something to be said about waiting for the next flare. The next eruption from a disease that inevitably lurks around the corner. Sometimes it seems like the waiting is the only constant.
Autoimmune disorders are self-mutilating diseases. They pick at a person’s body in various different ways. More times than not, they come with sister diseases. For example, I have Crohn’s disease, and the medication I am on caused psoriasis which is another autoimmune issue. I have had to become an expert on waiting.
At the beginning of this disease manifestation, I waited frantically for answers. I waited in countless doctors’ offices trying to find relief. Waited to explain my symptoms over and over again to different medical professionals to no avail. I waited for test results that couldn’t conclude anything. I waited for a diagnosis.
I have waited countless hours in the emergency department of the nearest hospital. I wait for these doctors and nurses to classify me as a drug-seeker. On my most recent visit, I waited on the floor writhing in pain and nausea for seven hours before someone finally administered the drugs I need. I wait for compassion.
Post diagnosis brings more waiting. I wait for medications to work. Wait for surgeries. Complications. Wait on hold with an insurance company that doesn’t want to pay for my treatment. I wait for some sort of remission. I currently am lucky to have found this, but my waiting is far from over.
Now I wait for the next bad day. The next ambulance ride to an uncaring, cold hospital. I wait for prescriptions to be filled. Wait for the unseen. I wait to see what other obstacles will arise, but more than anything else, now I wait for a cure.
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