Friday, September 27, 2013

Chronic Third Space

Since I finally conceded the battle to chronic migraine and stopped working, I've spent many bedridden hours hangin' online with my new peeps: #spoonies #migraineurs #canaries #chronic #invisibledisabilities ...#whatshallwecallpain?

A predominant theme among us is resentment, fury, and just plain pissed-offed-ness at those "non-spoonies" who dare to offer us unsolicited opinions or advice. 

To this day I harbor resentment against a former co-worker who dared (n 2005) to offer me a cure for my recently diagnosed, incurable neurological disease, called migraine, triggered by fragrance.  I had requested a fragrance-free work space as a work accommodation. Subsequently the entire staff of our office learned about my medical condition (not to worry, a post is forthcoming on the legal aspects of this tale).  A co-worker approached me in a shared area of the office and announced, in her typically insipid tone of voice, "I used to get really bad migraines but  I changed my diet and they stopped” all the while glancing askance at my generous figure. 

Not only did this person ignorantly share her unsolicited experience, she never, over the course of the following 8 years, stopped wearing perfume in the office. Avoidance of perfume was a simple remedy that my doctors had confirmed would be certain to improve not only my ability to work but also my overall health. Her signature scent was reminiscent of Easy-Off oven cleaner and felt like a barbecue skewer through the eyeball, yet she dared to offer medical advice?

Darn, now I've digressed into venomous, fragrance-free ranting - again!  I’m certain my gracious readers will not interpret this as evidence that I am an irrational person much in need of UNSOLICITED MENTAL HEALTH/EMOTIONAL WELLNESS ADVICE. They wouldn't even think of advising me to "calm down" or "breathe", because they can empathize with the impossibility of trying to calm down while mindfully inhaling the chemical equivalent of "RAID" for humans?

Let us leave aside our reasoned response demonstrating the total ignorance behind my co-worker's comment. 

Fast forward to the me/here/now gratefully discovering I am not alone in resenting recommendations for healing; and concurrently finding myself the mother of (gasp!) TWO WHO WOULD GIVE HEALTH RECOMMENDATIONS.

My daughter and son-in-law are wellness professionals, each in several different disciplines. I sure as heck want my kids to succeed in their line of work because I may need them to support me in my not-so-old age if I don't get back to work soon. 

Holy Triptans Migrainemama!  We've been propelled into ........ Third Space! 

I'm a radical believer in my own ersatz understanding of third space. It is a holding place where the subjective experiences  of both the #spoonies and the #healers co-participate in reality.  We're not talking parallel universes here; one doesn’t condescend to “understand how the other can think that way", or, “agree to disagree”. Those acts merely subsume one subjective reality to the other while masquerading as "more real" or even, God forbid, "objective".  Third space is a third subjective reality wherein lie the first two realities, participating in an assumed objective reality- sacred by virtue of inclusivity.

What could result from these worlds colluding ? 

 As Scheherazade would say, "more will be revealed". (But I'm not letting go of that resentment until hell freezes over).

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