Friday, December 18, 2009

Is Chronic Illness A Kind of Karma?

I'm not sure why, but since I got sick, I keep coming up with theories as to why my health went bad. 

Not, you know, real theories about the source of my illness. But theories as to why I "deserve" to be sick (i.e. I wasn't understanding enough of someone else's invisible chronic illness), or the lessons I'm supposed to learn from being sick. 

My current theory is that maybe I'm supposed to learn patience, and this is all karma because of my general impatience with the world in previous years. Or previous lives.

It seems like I'm always waiting for something specific to happen. I'm waiting for the next visit to one of my specialists. Or I'm waiting for a test result that perhaps will give me a unifying diagnosis. Or I'm waiting for a call from a doctor, or a doctor's office.

At this point, I'm not sure what my hurry is. 

Sure, I called a new rheumy's office to try to schedule an appointment, and the new-patient coordinator hasn't returned my call. Neither has my gastroenterologist's assistant, who I spoke to last Friday and who promised she'd get back to me on Monday. (Btw, the IgG version of my celiac blood work was also normal, but the doc had talked about wanting to do additional testing if it came back negative, so we'll see.) And yes, I've left new messages this week, but no such luck. 

I'm also waiting to hear from the clinic that I was referred to by the Comprehensive Pain Center at OHSU, which has this weird system that won't let me schedule an appointment until they have all the paperwork for a referral despite the fact that my insurance doesn't require a referral. I guess they want to make sure they don't waste their time on patients who don't meet their criteria.

Doesn't it just seem like there has to be some mystical force at work here? 

And it's not just my health situation that's got me thinking someone wants me to learn a little patience.

I've dropped the ball on scheduling my soon-to-be-5 daughter's birthday party, but part of the problem is I keep leaving messages places that no one returns my call. (Ellie's birthday is Monday, but Saturday at 8 a.m. will be the fifth anniversary of when I went into labor.) We never hold her party until January because of the holiday bustle, but I've usually got it scheduled and planned well before Thanksgiving.

If reincarnation is real, I must have done some awful things in a previous life!

And yeah, I know I'm being silly here chalking it all up to karma or whatever. It's just the way my brain works -- I want to have a reason, a logical explanation, something to point to as the cause. And until my doctors figure out an explanation or three for my health problems, I guess I'll just have to make some up for myself.   


Laura said...

I do this too sometimes...I think (for me at least) finding a spiritual/mystical lessons in having ms...and the lessons seems to shift at times...makes it some how more acceptable to me to be sick? does that make any sense? Patience is a biggie for me...I've written about her a lot (I tend to consider these lessons to be spiritual companions...another game I play that allows me to find acceptance each day. So there is Patience, Faith, Possibility, Choice, Gratitude and occasionally Grace pops in for tea as well.

I am quite certain MS is not a punishment for deeds I did or didn't do in this life or a past one...but I do think there are great learning opportunities involved in living with chronic illnesses of any kind...and blessings to be discovered every day...along side feeling exhausted, in pain, frustrated, and having all kinds of weird neurological symptoms!

gentle steps,

Herrad said...

Happy Christmas.