A letter to myself when my TN pain comes back
I hope I won’t have to read this letter that I’m writing for my future self. This is for when things feel overwhelming, when I find myself back in unbearable pain, clueless about what to do, unable to get up from bed, and losing to this monster. This is, for days like today.
Dear myself in pain,
Hey you, it’s okay to not be okay. I can tell you how the sun will rise again, and this too, shall pass, but you already know that.
So I’ll be right here beside you, feeling your pain alongside you. It might be the worst thing to have ever happened to you but your pain is valid. These ice pricks and lightning jolts on the temple, itching on the cheek, hammering on the forehead, I know how it feels. And I’m here for you, stroking your hair as you lay there wondering what did you do to deserve this.
I know you had a bad day. You spent the entire day sleeping. Your friend called to catch up but you had to say no because the pain soaked all the energy out of you. When you tell people you can’t meet them because you just woke up from a nap at 6pm and need to rest further, I know how they roll their eyes thinking it to be a vacation.
But your body needs rest right now. It is okay to say “no.” Take your time. Heal from the pain. There is no urgency. You can type words on your laptop later. The job can wait. Rest, Parky. You need it. Take a day or two off sooner rather than later.
As you lay there wondering what life would be like had TN not barged through the doors, I want you to remember that you are so empathetic because of the things you’ve gone through. You can hate TN with every ounce of your being but still be proud of who it has made you. It is because of the pain you’ve faced each day for the past six years that you choose to be kind when anger seems to be the appropriate response. You choose to understand. Oh you beautiful soul, I hope you know how amazing you are.
This phase too, shall pass. Remember, 2016? This bolt of lightning hit your left jaw, and you didn’t know what to do. You laid in bed, while going from doctor to doctor is search of some relief. You lied there, seeing life pass you by. Your friends acing in life, moving to different cities for studies, and you lied there on bed seeing an unknown illness destroy your life.
But you accepted that there is no relief, and you moved on. You put up with the glaring side effects, and you took it head on. I’m proud of you for showing life how strong you can be. You took 10 pills to function throughout college, but you didn’t let it destroy your dreams. When it was easier to give up, you hung in there. Like the past, just hang in there, this episode too, shall pass.
As I sit here beside you while you wither in pain, I want to remind you how brave you are. You didn’t let the society define your life. When doctors gave up, you not only picked yourself up but supported your parents and told them their child will be okay. You’ve been through so much at the hands of life, but you still choose to make life wonderful. I’m in awe of you.
It’s okay to cry it out. I know how lonely it is where you are. When nobody understands what you are going through. When the pain you are in, is your own. I’m proud of you for facing these battles alone. When no one was there, you were there for yourself. And as I write this, I’m here for you, yet again.
No matter how bad the pain attacks get, I want you to remember how strong you’ve been in the past six years. And use that strength to hang in there. No matter how lonely you feel, I’m right beside you. When no one will, I’ll be here for you. I’ll stay. :)