I live with pain and fatigue on a daily basis. It is my normal.
A normal which can be pretty unpleasant at times, but hey, you deal with it and find ways to live a good life alongside it.
But when someone starts complaining about a one-off ache, or making a huge fuss over a sprained ankle or other temporary injury it can really get on my nerves. That's like normal daily stuff for me and yet they make SUCH a fuss!
But this last few weeks I learned a lot.....
It turns out I am slightly allergic to bites from...whatever it was that bit me. 3 bites in the last 3 weeks - which all turned into huge welts - 9cm's long and itching HORRIBLY.
It's not something I am used to, and it was awful! I couldn't sleep, couldn't concentrate, and kept searching for something - anything that would help. I posted on social media and asked friends for advice. I even saw a medical professional (pharmacist) 3 times.
It wasn't my normal. It wasn't something I was used to. I didn't have the skills or knowledge to enable me to take a wise course of action - take the right meds, have a sensible expectation of duration and an arsenal of coping techniques.
There are people out there who deal with allergic itching on a regular basis - to whom my desperate rants and medical enquiries over a simple bite must have seemed pretty pathetic.
But it's OK that I didn't know how best to handle it because it wasn't something I was used to.
I need to remember this when someone else has an injury/illness that isn't their normal. Just as I wanted support, help, a bit of sympathy and chocolate to help me through, They are entitled to the same.
We are allowed to struggle to cope with symptoms that aren't part of our normal.
All of us.
Not just me.