Tag: Illness

A Love Letter to my Husband on the Occasion of the Second of our Three Children Coming Down with the Flu during the Polar Vortex

A Love Letter to my Husband on the Occasion of the Second of our Three Children Coming Down with the Flu during the Polar Vortex
To my dear, amazing, spectacular husband, I know I’m a difficult person to live with. I’m moody, a dreadful housekeeper, an often reluctant cook despite a love of cooking and a genuine flair for it. I’m a selfish and mercurial lover, I yell at the children, and most importantly, I have sleep problems. Since the... Read more »

Way Past Time for Healthcare Reform, or, The Whole Damn System Is Broken

Way Past Time for Healthcare Reform, or, The Whole Damn System Is Broken
When Mike was first diagnosed with glioblastoma, the hardest part wasn’t watching him struggle with radiation effects, or lose his hair, or the constant battle to make every piece of information that concluded with its fatality invisible to the two of us. The hardest thing was getting him his medications. Not dealing with insurance, they... Read more »

Next Year is its own Resolution

Next Year is its own Resolution
There is a desperation that comes at the end of the year. All the things not yet accomplished, all the things to begin fresh with the new year. Lists of goals and resolutions and the abortive calculus of “better than” versus “working on” multiplied by “Things That Have Changed.” After Thanksgiving, it’s all a matter of... Read more »
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Young, Naive Cancer

Young, Naive Cancer
When I was 23, my fiancé was diagnosed with glioblastoma- terminal brain cancer. Most of our friends were graduating from college, getting jobs, enjoying the freedom that comes in the years after you turn 21 and you make all your biggest mistakes, but not us. Our lives revolved around chemotherapy, radiation, clinical trials, and managing... Read more »

An Adventure in Misdiagnosis, for Dysautonomia Awareness Month

An Adventure in Misdiagnosis, for Dysautonomia Awareness Month
I’ve recently learned that October is Dysautonomia Awareness Month, which I found utterly stunning. I thought dysautonomia was a rare disorder, incredibly rare. I was spectacularly wrong. However, it is often misdiagnosed. It takes an average of six years to diagnose dysautonomia. It took five years to diagnose mine. When I was eighteen, I started... Read more »

It's Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, so here's an Expert!

It's Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, so here's an Expert!
September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. As you know, I write a lot about mental health, but today I want to hand over this platform to an amazing mental health warrior, Sarah Fader. She’s writing here today about being a mental health advocate for your children, because early intervention is the best intervention, and an active... Read more »
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Hot Dogs, Birthdays, and Life's Big Questions

Hot Dogs, Birthdays, and Life's Big Questions
Yesterday was my husband’s thirty-sixth birthday. He has lived a third of his life knowing he has brain cancer. At some point in all of our lives, we have an existential crisis. A moment where we wake up in the morning and say to ourselves, “I’m going to die. One day, I’m going to be... Read more »

Discovering My PTSD in the Dentist's Chair

Discovering My PTSD in the Dentist's Chair
Halfway through my wisdom tooth extraction, the drugs wore off. The whole thing had started normally enough. Sitting on the chair, I breathed into a mask filled with gas. I looked away from the bright lights pointed into my mouth, and counted backward as the world faded to black. I assume they set to work... Read more »

Reaching Back When You Reach Out

Reaching Back When You Reach Out
I write about a lot of things that people often don’t know how to talk about in person. Hell, I write about a lot of things I don’t know how to talk about in person. Part of that is the complexity of the social dynamics in a conversation (is this a person I can talk openly about... Read more »
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Brain Diseases are Real Diseases

Brain Diseases are Real Diseases
You know how it seems like every month is something month? Like, last month was Sexual Assault Awareness Month, March was Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month? May is both Brain Tumor Awareness Month, and Mental Health Awareness Month. I’m sure this wasn’t exactly planned, but I think it’s meaningful that these two awarenesses are overlapping. Back before... Read more »