Category: Health

How serious am I about this writing stuff?


How serious am I about this writing stuff? When I got sick 5 years ago, and the prospect of death was suddenly real, I became obsessed with discovering my story. Who was I? What did I want to accomplish in life?  Can I find meaning in my suffering? Does my illness ostracize me or does […]

I’m hungover.


I’m hungover. Except I haven’t had a drink almost 3 months. My head is pounding and I’m dizzy and nauseous as if it was 1999 and last night I chased a bottle of strawberry Boone’s Farm with 10 Natty Lights. I stagger to the shower. Shower. Towel off. Get changed. Get coffee, started feeling sorry […]

The Danger of Not Telling Your Story


As a writer and a person with a degenerative brain condition, I often tumble into a state of what-will-they-say-about-me paranoia. A state where you hold your breath as you wrestle with the sinking feeling of eternal doom. What has helped me breathe and escape such doom is telling my story. I’ve learned that showing who […]

26 things I tell myself when I’m struggling


            To my friend, who thinks no one understands…we understand. “This too shall pass.” (King Solomon) “There bad moments. But there are no bad days.” “Beyond this mountain is another mountain.” (Haitian Proverb) “Sometimes it’s okay to be selfish.” “Somewhere, someone has endured much worse.” “Look hard enough until you […]

Having a hole in your brain isn’t all terrible. Learning to make the best of your misfortunes


Having a hole in your brain isn’t all terrible. Dare I say I’m grateful for having the opportunity to endured such a misfortune. For I’ve learned my attitude about such stark truth is simply a matter of perspective. Like this one time when I was having a PET scan– which tests for Multiple Sclersosis. I […]

Thoughts from a Waiting Room


I’m sitting in a waiting room, waiting to get a brain MRI when Jim Croce’s “I’ve Got a Name” begins playing over the ceiling speakers. Like the pine trees lining the winding road I got a name, I got a name Like the singing bird and the croaking toad I got a name, I got […]

It was both funny and painful to watch "Everything hurts."


Three days after the race and Cindy is walking as if she has a pair of wooden legs. “Everything hurts. My legs, my back, my ribs.” I stand at the kitchen sink and watch Cindy open the cabinet, reach for a glass, and wince. She draws a breath. “I should’ve trained for the race.” She […]

The race I did not run.


On June 2nd I marked September 23rd on my calendar. On September 23rd I planned to run my first 5k. An act of defiance of sorts. Defying both body and brain. Proving that I could physically and mentally triumph over 5 years of living with cerebellar ataxia, sarcoidosis, nystagmas, enlarged lymph nodes, vertigo, muscle spasms, […]

Health Update: It's a migraine but it's complicated


On Monday a neurologist diagnosed me with a lingering migraine. Dizziness, nausea, stabbing headaches, sensitivity to light are symptoms aligned with a migraine. This is the first time I have been diagnosed with a migraine. The neurologist ordered some blood work and issued prescriptions for a brain MRI to see if the cerebellum has further […]

The small moments have been the hardest The vertigo has been in my brain for 5 weeks


I’m lying on my back on the floor, staring at the ceiling, and I’m afraid to move. The vertigo has been in my brain for 5 weeks. And though symptoms have subsided enough for me to function, I still feel like I’m falling off a cliff every time I sit up or roll to my […]