By Lisa-Marie –
“Hey girl. I’m really sorry, but I have to cancel our plans for tonight. I’m in bed with a killer migraine. Rain check?”
“Good morning boss, I’m unfortunately stuck in bed with a migraine, so I won’t be able to come in to work today. Sorry for the inconvenience.”
“Hi Professor, I won’t be able to come to lab today due to a migraine. Let me know if there’s a way for me to make it up. I can provide proof of prescription if necessary for the absence.”
“Sorry babe, can we do date night another night? My head is killing me.”
If you haven’t caught on yet, chronic migraines mean there’s a lot of unpredictability in my life plans.
The lack of commitment gets to the point of infuriation, but some things are simply out of my control. It takes years of adjusting to this mindset to realize I’m not at fault. It takes even longer for friends and family to understand.
It’s only natural to get frustrated at that one friend who never follows through with plans. I’m sorry to my friends.
It’s only natural to feel disrespected by that one student who doesn’t show up or leaves class early. I’m sorry to my professors.
It’s only natural to wish I was sitting with you at the dinner table. I’m sorry to my family.
In a perfect world, empathy would allow all to see that I am trying to be there. I am doing my best to maintain friendships, relationships, and a professional work manner. In reality, this is a rare occurrence.
Friends have disappeared because I “complain” too much that my head hurts: I’m only trying to let you know why I may be acting different. Family gets frustrated that I’m in my room during family dinner: believe me, if I weren’t in bed puking, I’d love to eat your cooking. Bosses send me home because I’m messing up too much: it’s hard to perform at my best when my head is pounding.
I don’t have scars on my body to show I’m injured. I don’t have tubes coming out of me to show I need medical assistance. I look perfectly fine on the outside, but I’m fighting a battle in my body every day.
I guess the expression “don’t judge a book by its cover” comes into play here; it’s easy to put me at fault considering, at a glance, I look just like any other healthy human. If only you could read the book before you saw the cover. Then maybe you could forgive my inability to always be there.
There’s always a reason.
Next time someone’s not there, take a moment to realize that they are not there because they don’t care, but because they truly CANNOT be there. It might prevent you from losing someone in your life who was meant to be there for a reason.