Living a Nightmare

I am living a nightmare.

Relatively speaking.

An autoimmune disease that changes daily life seems to be not that complicated… at first. But you just wait. When you feel like you’re going to pass out while sitting in your car or your head starts pounding when you just got to a concert, all because of your pancreas’ inability to function, that seems like a nightmare in and of itself. When you stab yourself day in and day out just to make sure you don’t die. When the smell of insulin permeates through the room. When you have poked your finger 3 times in a row because your blood decides to go into hiding. When your body doesn’t want to cooperate. When you feel as though you are a slave to the meter. This is when you learn you’re living a nightmare.

When I was first diagnosed, I felt like I was in a nightmare. I wanted someone to pinch me, to yell my name. I just wanted to be woken up from this temporary nightmare.

A chronic, invisible illness that changes daily life seems to be not that complicated.. at first. But you just wait. When you quickly learn that your body belongs to a scheduled regimen of antibiotics, supplements and vitamins, you think, “wake me up. I don’t like this dream.” The moment you figure out that your social life has been stolen. When you become bed ridden. You can’t walk. Taking a shower is like running 10 miles. Sleeping 4 hours during the day becomes a part of your calendar. When you realize your life has been robbed by a chronic, invisible, disregarded, misunderstood disease. When people stop talking to you because they think you’re making your “nonexistent” disease up. This is when you learn you’re living a nightmare.

When I was first diagnosed, I felt like I would soon wake up from this nightmare. I thought I could endure it for the few, short weeks that I’d be on treatment. Then, I learned that treatment is much longer that a few, short weeks.

A while after I was diagnosed, I knew I was living a temporary nightmare.

I lay awake at night hoping someone will come pinch me with a needle full of “get better” juice.

I lay awake at night thinking, “I wonder what kinds of nightmares other people are living.”

I lay awake at night thinking, “Do people realize the nightmares in their life are temporary?”

I lay awake at night praying, “God, open their eyes. Open their eyes to see the reality of grace and love. Open their eyes to see the reality of hope and faith.”

I lay awake at night praying, “God, give me the strength to continue to endure this nightmare. I surrender to you, oh God. Grant me peace.”

I lay awake at night. Simply to avoid having a nightmare about my nightmare.

I understand that each nightmare has a glorious dream to go with it. I understand that each nightmare will end, in time.

I have learned to not be selfish. I have learned that most everyone has a nightmare of their own.

I have realized that nightmares are like storms. That each one brings a beautiful realization. That each one reveals strength and ability to overcome. That each one shows grace and light. a1b80291948202fb91bd9a94686d990a

I am confident, that one day, you will wake up from your nightmare. You will be more powerful than ever, you will be stronger than ever, you will be smarter than ever.

Your nightmare is just a piece of your glorious dream. Your nightmare is not your life.

Your nightmare is relative. My nightmare is relative. Nightmares do not discriminate.

Be positive in your thoughts and actions. Be positive in your self image and self standards. Be positive. And your nightmare will soon dissipate into the reality of life, and your glorious dream will be soon seen again.

xoxo,
Elise Hendrickson

“She is tossed by the waves, but does not sink.”

(Please keep Nice, France in your prayers, as they are battling their own worst nightmare.)

*written in response to the Daily Post’s prompt Nightmare

 

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