I recently read this post on the blog Finding Freedom With Epilepsy about a young man in Cameroon (which is located in what I would pretty ignorantly describe as central west Africa) who is trying to change the way Epilepsy is understood and treated in his country. Epilepsy patients there, such as his sister, face a lack of treatment resources, a lack of disability rights, plus the common belief that seizures are caused by evil spirits. It’s hard to get treatment, it’s hard to work or attend school safely and there is a widespread belief that something about you is being controlled by dark forces.
Reading about this, I feel pretty ridiculous about my occasional whining that I have to drive all of 9 minutes to get to the Target pharmacy to pick up my practically-free-of-cost prescriptions. And that I got completely outraged yesterday when I came across a blog post that dared to suggest Lupus is caused by emotional problems.
(One of the emotional problems this post mentioned was “shyness.” Listen, I am open to all kinds of theories as to what wakes Lupus up in some people but I can guarantee to you that it was not shyness that got me sick. I’m not going to even give a link to this blog because I don’t want to give them any more attention than they already get. The blogger is probably Scientologist, and by saying that I just opened myself up to the danger of the Church of Scientology spamming my public email account until it no longer functions. They actually do that as a practice to punish naysayers.)
Yes, my periodical whining is pretty darn ridiculous compared to the battle epileptics, and I imagine other chronically ill patients as well, have to face in other parts of the world and my heart goes out to them. Today being Memorial Day in the United States, my heart is also grateful for the men and women who have fought to make our country such a safe and stable place, a place where I have my choice of doctors, accessible medications, and am so spoiled to have limitless internet where I can publish the little book I have dreamed about for years, and then receive such warm support from you folks.
Happy Memorial Day and bless those whose service keep me in such spoiled comfort.