Warning: This is not the fault in our stars. This blog is an honest account of the brutal, gross, hilarious, unexpected realities of being “the sick kid.” While i love me some John Green as much as the next girl, I am done with the neatly wrapped, sepia toned, 2 hours -till -happily – ever -after- Hollywood presentation. This is the real version, where hand tremors ruin your selfies and your eyeliner, and nobody’s kissing in the rain, and you don’t look like Shailene Woodley. My diagnoses was six months ago, and Ansel Elgort is nowhere to be found. I’m calling BULL.
Welcome, dolls. My name is Leah, and last June i was diagnosed with a slew of super sexy, life-altering diseases. Now, lest you become all starry-eyed and excited for the personal blog of Hazel Grace, be forewarned. Unlike in the books and movies about the sick kids, there’s nothing particularly Nicholas Sparks- esque about my life. I am not an angst riddled, metal loving, misunderstood outcast with a touching story and a broken heart. I don’t pout, or ponder the abyss of death, or write “why me,” poetry. On the contrary. I am a normal, yoga obsessed, smoothie drinking, drama free 18 year old girl from Maryland. Repeat: I DO NOT DIG THE DRAMA. I like anthropology and running. There is no tragically ill boyfriend/love of my life. (Actually, i might be the single-est person alive. My Augustus Waters/ Edward Cullen/ Christian Grey is Netflix.) There is no tale of stoic bravery, where i battle my Lupus/Fibromyalgia/Pots/Celiac and arise victorious. I am not a brooding, introspective genius who nobody understands. I am a happy, open, zen teenager with the minor detail of my dearly misinformed, charmingly useless immune system. No filter, no soundtrack, no montage scene where i fall deeply in love with a fellow sicky.
Now, what there WILL be is as follows. This is the story of the parts the camera pans away for. This is the part that nobody talks about, and it extends farrr past the good, the bad, and the ugly. L-U-P-U-S, five little letters that essentially mean my immune system can’t differentiate between healthy tissue and foreign invaders. In other words, if my immune system gets triggered by anything, the bod goes all sons of anarchy on me, just full on attacks itself (more on that later.) Now there are many different reasons, if i may say so myself, to read this blog. It just depends on who you are. For those of you who don’t suffer from any autoimmune diseases, maybe you’ll get a laugh, (not maybe, you will, i’m hilarious,) or a firsthand view into a lifestyle that’s not your own. Maybe you’ll just get to read relate-able stories from a brutally honest, compellingly witty 18 year old stuck in her bedroom with a laptop. You’ll definitely get smoothie recipes and eating tips, and advice on how to look gorgeous when you’re too tired (or lazy,) to move. Maybe, just maybe, it’ll raise a little awareness for these faceless, cureless, diseases that could use a little attention. Now, for those of you stuck chugging along with me on the autoimmune crazy train from hell, this blog serves a difference purpose. I want you to see that you’re not alone. Those nights in your tank top on the bathroom floor, those flirting sessions ruined by steroid induced brain fog, the (countless,) pics you can’t Instagram because of puffy eyes, i get that it feels like you’re the only one who could possibly have such random garbage to deal with. I know you think you’re the only one (under the age of 80,) who has to worry about if you’re joints are gonna be working tomorrow morning. I thought the same thing. Surprise! You’re not. There’s a whole bunch of us, and we all hate swollen prednisone face too!! The effects of these disorders, (or diseases, whichev,) are physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and psychological, and we ALL feel them. This isn’t “wah us, we’re so sick,” pity party. This is a gathering of badasses who are going to laugh about the things we can’t control. This is my chronicle (CHRONICle. hehehe. Medical pun,) of living with this unpredictable insanity. My goal here is to relate to the people who suffer and can’t explain it, and to explain it to the people who don’t suffer.
I want this blog to show the entire spectrum. Should you decide to come on this Journey with me, (okay gag, can’t believe i couldn’t think of a less cliche way to say that, cringe,) i should warn you the path changes. Alot. The stories will be sad sometimes, and funny sometimes, and it all gets very deep and introspective. Even medical and boring, on occasion. But the one thing i promise not to change, is that they will remain consistently honest. More then just the physical nonsense, this blog will cover friendships, and gap years (I studied abroad,) and guys, and being forced into responsibility wayyy to young. It will cover the how to’s, and how to not’s, and the golden rules of being an autoimmune badass (or just a regular badass. Whichever.) Its about the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Hashtag no filter, dolls. Pretty is for the weak 😉
Lupus, also known as “the cruel mystery,” is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system cant differentiate between healthy tissue and foreign invaders. There is no known cure. Symptoms, prognosis, and all that fun stuff will be included in a later post (like, um, all of them.)
Fibromyalgia involves hypersensitive pain receptors, cognitive fog, fatigue, and muscular problems. There is no known cure.
Pots is an acronym for a longer name i refuse to commit to memory, but it basically means low blood pressure and quick heartbeat.
Celiac is fancy term for “i’m terrible at eating, especially gluten.” No cure, but treatment currently consists of dietary restriction.
While that’s just a teeny, one dimensional outline of those suckers, it gives you a reference point for the rest of my posts. Cheers, dolls 😉 stay badass.