Friday, May 26, 2006

Singular Sclerosis

Oh well, I haven't been active on this blog for months, about the same time since I've felt like a real person. I have been diagnosed with "a single incident of brain infection, typical of multiple sclerosis according to the MRI scan", which means that I don't have MS yet, since it has to be multiple in order to be called that, but it's a single incident, lasting a few months so far, that almost crippled me for a while (half my face is still numb, and so are the edges of my fingers, my vision is blurry and I crash into things a lot, I get tired before I can even say the word out loud and I haven't been able to use my computer for more than a couple of minutes at a time for ages), but "in 6 to 8 weeks after the intravenal steroid treatment" (on greek Easter Sunday, that was) I expect to be all better and it may never return (which I hope), or it may do at some point and I'll thus be part of that portion of the population that science can't really do anything about just yet. And no, this hasn't managed to make me reconsider my views on studying biochemistry, I met enough people during my 4 years there to know that someone, at some point, will discover something useful about the situation, whether I'm part of the solution or not - although my 4 wasted years enabled me to show off to doctors and friends, not being an alien creature in the hospital that has no idea what's wrong with her, what they're doing to her or why.

The cool thing about this is that, eventually, everything will be ok, even if it's just for a while. They seem to hope for a full recovery, and although I'm not well enough to fill in my time with any of the things I enjoy doing (reading, writing, drawing, sitting on the PC for hours on end or watching film after series and series after film on Than's computer screen are just not options right now, just like doing useful things around the house for him or myself), I'm enjoying it while it lasts. It does have its benefits, most of them including the amazing people I have in my life (my mother and Than being the two main ones, and if you'd asked me beforehand I don't know if I'd assume they had it in them to support me like they have), as are things like university assessment extensions (I got two weeks for three essays and managed to hand them all in yesterday, by the agreed time, and, had I not, I would be given the whole summer due to "mitigating circumstances", but I managed to eliminate a few things I'd still have to worry about as soon as I could) or the worries that probably got me here in the first place.

I never knew Than had it in him to be so supportive - I was usually the one dragging him about, worrying about him and his health or financial status or his struggles with the University and his excellently creative dyslexia that only hinders him in the one department that I can do something about and guide him through (writing long essays), and the roles seem to almost be reversed around the house during this time. He's split himself in two, learned to cook and even uses his skills in tidying up and washing the dishes, since I don't beat him to it right now, and still he manages to find time to do all his creative work (from the webcomic to our documentary, which you can find the crude, uni version of at http://www.deeplexuniverse.plus.com ), keep in touch with friends that constantly ask about me, cover me on the Serendipitous forum when I'm not in the right state to worry about it and still be available when I need him to get me stuff or when I need to be "carried" somewhere to do something - whether that be the University across the road or the cinema across town, which, as I discovered, is the only thing I can enjoy right now: no monitor to tire my eyes, complete darkness around me and a huge screen for me to enjoy a film on).

And my mother, on the other hand, has been a dream come true. I've always known she loves me to bits, but both her and my father usually avoid spoiling me if they can, probably to make me stronger for it. Still, during the past couple of months, she came over to the UK twice, we went clothes shopping till I dropped (that's always our "quality time" together), she escorted me to all the doctors and hospitals I needed to go to within the dreaded NHS system, and spent tons of money on me and my wellbeing on the way. Things I had wanted to save money for since last year, such as a freezer or even an mp3 player, just appeared out of the goodness of her heart, as did non-material things that I thought would never happen, her sitting on a chair next to Than and talking casually, discovering that I'm not the one thing that tears them apart, but the one thing that they have in common.

And yes, everyone else has found that soft place in their heart to worry about "poor old me" - the University (some lecturers as well as the field secretary have seemed really worried by the dreaded "MS" initials), my father (the diagnosis, as well as my mother's first trip, came just after a 75-page translation for his work which he PAID me for and I did at my own pace), friends and family of all sorts and just about anyone who's passed through my world at this time of year seems so supportive and so worried... I'm not dying, you guys, at least not any more than every mortal being in this world is...

I remember the worries I had a few months ago and they almost seem funny now. Than has already thought about finding a non-creative job next school year when we come back, and the projects for the summer ahead seem ideal - not only is a friend of my dad's partner going to find me something in a hot-shot greek production company, but last year's producer guy is already searching for something - paid - for us to do during the summer in a film and TV advertising production background, as well as a friend of ours who is setting up a music production studio and has offered to give us internships there and impart some of his sound-related knowledge, since we plan to spend time around there in the forthcoming months and I will personally be paid extra by his wife-to-be for some english-to-greek translations that she'll need during that time (she's English and has just started learning the greek language, which has still not enabled her to use her copywriting skills there), while she's already tried to pay me for the translation of their website - money which I feel bad about taking from friends - and Than will have his webcomic advertised on their walls... It seems like a fairytale, and if I'm allowed to avoid working at my father's company this year (unless they really, really need me for a few afternoons, to do something that noone else there can do), the summer seems ideal and will be a tiresome yet pleasurable change from my freaking-out-while-being-unable-to-do-anything past few months.

Overall, this has made me think twice about the old grandmothers' attitude, "as long as you have your health, everything else is secondary"... Health (and its absence) was a realm that my mind had never truly considered until now. Things change so drastically without it, and factors such as University deadlines and money issues seem so small now - at least for the time being - that they can be overcome in a second, since I have a good and truthful excuse.

I'll be more active in the near future on this blog, I promise, but my long-term absence is something I don't expect anyone to tell me off about (I literally couldn't have spent half this time writing something till now that I'm starting to get better) and I won't really feel bad about personally. It wouldn't have been an issue otherwise, but it was, due to this - I kid you not. And all for the better now, optimism at hand.

7 comments:

Than said...

I didn't "learn" how to cook or do the other home related stuff.

I just know how to hide my skills well so others can't boss me around.
It took years of training if you must know and for your information, I was cooking and taking care of myself since I was 8. You were then... 2 years old?

But as we all know, with great power comes great responsibility which, I try to avoid.

Mac (guy from those highlands. 'N stuff.) said...

Spoke like a true ninja, Than m'boy! :p

Jeez, Mel, I knew you weren't feeling well, but I sure as hell hadn't realised you went through this kind of ordeal. I guess someone could say what doesn't kill you make you stronger, and all, but that's so cliche by now that I'd kill myself if I said it with a straight face.

Big yay that you're getting better, and even bigger that such great things are lining up for you guys. It just goes to show that every cloud has a silver lining, and that after the storm out comes the rainbow, and if you hold on to your dream it will eventually come true... oh, oh, and when you want something like, really bad, like, the whole universe like, conspires for you to get it. And shit.

Aaaaaaahhh bugger it. It just rocks that you're feeling better. And props to Than for still managing to make CB Extras hilarious with all that load. Mr. Hen kicks ass!:p

Foiver said...

Gamw to kerato mou...

Toso kairo pou epsaxna pws na brw pws eisai k ti kaneis eixa ksexasei to pio logiko, to blog sou. Elpizw na to diabaseis...

Einai sklhro na ma8aineis oti agaphmena sou proswpa (be them friends or family) antimetwpizoun problhmata ugeias, idiaitera se periptwseis opws h dikh sou k tou patera mou.

8a h8ela na hmoun pio supportive alla metaksu esou k tou patera k tou pappou mou eimai torn to fucking pieces...Euxomai mono na exete ligo xrono na sas dw otan er8ete sto ellanta...

For the record, exw ton patera mou me "mia akoma parallagh tou ALS", afou gia thn wra exei xasei ton elegxo enos podiou mono, alla de kserw an 8a proxwrhsei, poso klp klp...

Fucking summer, euxomai na sas pane ola kala. POTE GURNATE ELLANTA????

Ashram said...

Health is a bitch.... arxises na xalas kai esy siga siga opws oloi mas.... toulaxiston kalytereyeis opote einai kalo... get well ekneyristiko koumeli giati kaneis den thelei enan anekselegkto melodio anamesa mas:P

Perastika:)

Βάρδος said...

Bunny, εύχομαι να πάνε όλα καλά.

Και συνέχισε να γράφεις: έχεις ένα πολύ ωραίο blog εδώ. :)

bunnydee said...

Re seis... euxaristw :)
Eimai episimws kala twra (kai ntoparismeni me perissotera steroids ap tin Katerina Thanou) kai katw ap tin prostasia enos dedicated crew anthrwpwn pou me agapane kai nomizoun oti akoma xreiazomai extra attention enw epitelous edw kai 4-5 meres noiwthw KALA meta apo toson kairo imi-apraksias.

Kai nai, eimai sto ellanta, eimai energi kai strifoguristi, kai den exw noiwsei toso gemati psuxologika edw kai xilieties. Elpizw na kratisei vasika auto.

Kai Varde, thx re si, an den eixan akoma, en etei 2006, mia kakomoiri ISDN sto spiti oi goneis mou tha egrafa pio suxna sto blog ki apo dw pleon - tha doume pws tha paei auto (opws eipa, sto grafeio tou patera mou mono kana apogeuma sto toso paizei na paw fetos, ki as einai megalos peirasmos i elleipsi tis DSL sto spiti...)

Cool pantws... oso pio xalasmeni eimai toso perissotero me agapaei o kosmos... eprepe na exw meinei sto goth phase mou milame...

jay ben said...

hi, this is jay .

i read your blog...very gud information...

thanks for sharing....