Moments after I hung my cane on the cubicle wall next to me, I proclaimed with a chuckle, “today is my holiday. I’m going on strike this afternoon. It’s rare disease day. I have one, igg4-RD. I deserve a break.”
“Is it really?” My friend Six asked. “Do I get to observe it?”
“Unfortunately, I don’t think diabetes is one of the more than 7,000 rare diseases the FDA acknowledges,” I replied. “But, next month I’ll celebrate with you, oh, and Tara too.”
“That’s National autoimmune disease awareness month. I say we take the month off.”
We high-fived each other then went back to work on the noon show.
When I was done furiously typing my stories, I looked around the newsroom.
Without my cane, I look just like everyone else, at least on the surface, I thought. No one can see the scars on my belly or notices the big one on my neck. No one stares at me when I swallow my morning medication. And, no one treats me as if I’m not capable of the same or greater performance than anyone else.
Just then, my executive producer told me I’d been added to an additional story. With less than 15 minutes before air, I lowered my head and cranked it out.
My mind remains sharp even as my body breaks down, I thought. This allows me to think beyond my physical scars, pains and limits to keep my career on track and my enjoyment for life high.
Read days 1-58: https://nikabeamon.com
#rarediseaseday #diabetes #igg4 #spoonies #autoimmunedisease #invisibleillness #chronicillness #chronicpain #disability #igg4 #2018 #joythroughthepain