Thursday, August 31, 2006

The Paradox of Hope

'You want me where?'


Recently I have been considering my use of the word hope. 1. hope, noun - the feeling that what is wanted can be had. I have often found myself saying or writing well-meant things to ME pals, like, 'Hope you feel better soon.' Consider this: would anyone say to an amputee, 'I hope your legs grow back,' or even 'I hope to God stem cell research will find a way to create new legs'? Not likely. Tactless, me?! Granted, there are fluctuations in ME, but likewise, there is also a constant point of function at which the majority of us have never been able to get beyond.
So there are days when I am striving for the mental equivalent of the amputee's prosthetic legs; the adaptation to a situation I cannot change. There's always a dip in my stomach as I set denial aside for a while and stop wishing for major improvement or healing. This may feel like defeat on many levels yet I know that it takes strength. It does. It goes against all our conditioning. It's the camel passing through the eye of the needle. I know I go on about this in my blog but there really is the biggest battle, or the biggest shift, contained in that one small word, accept.
Well, the sun is shining here and I'll be able to get out for an hour to meet Stuart for tea/coffee soon. Phew - I will be sure to appreciate it while it lasts.
-C

5 comments:

Mo said...

Don't you find it's often other people who just can't accept it as well? My MIL just refuses to accept I've done all I can to get better and is forever sending me articles about miracle recoveries from the Sunday Post!

Mo said...

Don't you find that it's often other people who just can't accept it as well? My MIL refuses to believe I've done all I can to get better and is forever sending me articles from the Sunday Post about miracle recoveries!

CatherineNiven said...

Just realised this is my catchphrase 'hope you feel better soon', can't help it really, the only way I can deal with being ill is to try and be positive (which usually fails) and fight it all the way. It can be an insensitive phrase, but it also reflects the fluctuating nature of the illness - one week good, one week awful. Cx

Ciara said...

Hi Cat,

I don't think 'hope you feel better' is insensitive. I say it all the time too - as a result of not knowing what else to say.

-C

Deedee said...

ég gaf ykkur von sem varð að vonbrigðum.

As they say in Iceland.