A few things have happened in the past week, and they have really altered my perspective on the world. No, I’ve not found religion. I’ve not taken a fuck tonne of drugs and seen the light – though I have taken an awful lot of Diazepam/Valium. I am not “woke” – I’m not Lena fucking Dunham. There has been some science though.
So, part of this reality check was yesterday. What happened can only be described as my body trying to eject my shoulders from my torso. I called my GP in floods of tears, stating that I felt like there was a wedge being driven in behind my shoulder blades. This is the first (and probably only) time that Lorraine, the demon-receptionist, found some inner kindness, under her thick, ice cold hide of pure malevolence. I also called my boyfriend and told him that today was one of those days that he needs to come home from work, listen to me cry, wash my hair, dry my hair (preferably without incinerating my scalp this time) and may possibly have to wipe my bum for me – thankfully the latter service was not required. He came home and sort of helped, but mostly played Magic the Gathering online under the guise of caring for me.
Dr Davidson called me back. In our house, we un-affectionately refer to this grade A plonker as Dr DickButt. This man was lucky to survive the wrath of my mother when he arrogantly looked at her and uttered the words “could any of this be… you know… psychological?!” WHEN IT TURNS OUT I HAVE A GENETIC CONNECTIVE TISSUE DISORDER AND AM QUITE LITERALLY FALLING TO PIECES. Anyway, he remained true to his soul-less cock-womble self. He offered me drugs that he knows I can’t take and asked me if I was “unwilling” to take these drugs. Yeah, I’d rather drink bleach. My notes almost certainly say I’m not co-operative due to this basic measure of self-preservation. My Mum – and I’m pretty sure everyone’s mum… – always asked me if I’d jump off of a bridge if someone told me to. A doctor suggesting I take opioids is akin to this childhood lesson in not being a fucking idiot.
Today, I went and saw a private sports therapist lady who knows about EDS. She understands the very delicate balance in needing my muscles tight to hold my joints in place, but not wanting my muscles to get so excited that they turn me into some deformed, hulk like Quasimodo. I am currently sporting a LOT of kinesiology tape. I mean, my shoulder blades were channelling my inner Metatron, it was pretty fucked up. It takes a lot of sticking power to put those bad boys back in place. But it feels AMAAAAAAZING. My lovely, romantic, tactful boyfriend exclaimed upon me leaving the therapy room that “you look so much better without the Quasimodo stoop!” Thanks bae. Then we went to Dr Noodles and ate satay chicken noodles in the sunshine. This is kind of irrelevant, but oh my god, it was so tasty.
So, Dr DickButt, I am not un-cooperative. I’m simply looking after myself. I am my number one concern. Sometimes, most of the time, drugs are not going to fix my problems because, if you’ve not gathered this already, my body either completely fails to metabolise drugs or it’s a bit like putting diesel into a petrol-fuelled car or… washing your genitals with Original Source mint shower gel. Very. Immediate. Regrets. I will not EVER let a doctor make me feel that I’m letting myself (Or them? Fuck them!) down again, when all I’m doing is trying to look after this broken down body that I have to live in. It’s the only one that I’ve got.
The thing about this being the only body that I’ve got and learning to be content with it has stemmed from going to see the majestic Professor Brian Cox and the absolute words master that is Robin Ince. I’ve been to see so many therapists, doctors, specialists and it’s a guy who talks about planets who helps me make sense of my life. I’d never considered the magnitude of the luck involved that our existence is just, exactly as it is. Without banging on about the science of it all, we are so overwhelmingly lucky that our planet, out of all of the planets in the universe, has all of the elements we need to exist, just as we do at this period of time. It’s not until you see a timeline of the existence of planet earth that you think HOW THE FUCK CAN I WASTE THIS?! Basically, what I’m saying is… two hours in a room with thousands of other people and Brian Cox changed my perspective on life more than anything else ever has. Okay, so I’ll probably never have kids because my body is a sack of shit… but there is so much else in the world that we have to enjoy. We have a responsibility to love this planet and the people in it because we are so, very, very, VERY fucking lucky to be in it.
Lastly, but most importantly, I received an extremely comforting phone call today. In my last blog, I spoke about some traumatic, cruel, abhorrent shit that went down, back in the days of dial-up internet and when your “house phone” had a curly cable. As promised, the band’s tour manager, and close friend, called me. It would have been easy for him to call me up, make all the right noises, pat me on the head and then tell himself that he’d dealt with the situation and that it was now a closed book. But that didn’t happen. He was kind, genuine, understanding, and very apologetic and truly seemed affected by the knowledge of what went on. In some ways, I feel that it’s better 13 years late than never, but in other ways, this feels like the best possible time to deal with this. I’m not angry at the band or at their tour manager – not even a little bit. I’m touched that he was, in turn, so honest about his experience of mental health and physical health and spoke to me like a friend, not a freak and made it crystal clear that the door was left open. Despite only being a few years older than me, he was the person “in charge” when shit hit the fan and his acknowledgement that I did nothing wrong is more therapy than you could ever pay a stranger to provide.
He’s just a regular guy, sitting down in London, probably eating his dinner. He might even have a shiny, red apple for desert. I don’t know if he’ll ever realise that he held the power in his hands to allow me to start making a complete U-turn in my mental health. I hope that when he thinks about this, which I’m sure he will, that he sees it as having helped a 28 year old woman in a way that no-one else could. I especially hope that he doesn’t feel that he let me down in any way, all those years ago. I’d hate for all of that poisonous shit to cause another minute of sadness for anyone. Aside from my family, boyfriend, bunnies and closest friends, the band he looks after are one of the true pillars of strength and happiness in my life, and I’m so, utterly delighted that they have had so much success. Attending their gigs has provided some of my favourite memories… and will no doubt continue to do so.
I really like this world.