The Strains On Relationships
For me, it was breaking down some of the relationships in my life. For instance, before I got sick, I was the head cheerleading and dance coach at Washington State University. I was living my dream, doing everything I wanted, and then, all of a sudden, I couldn't go to a family birthday party. I was bed-bound, I was wheelchair-bound.
People didn't understand it. I didn't want to go out and be social, or when I did, that I had to worry about people bumping into me, or the loud noises that were going to occur, and I didn't have the energy to keep it up. And people took that as I was standoffish, or something was wrong with me in a mental capacity instead of in a physical capacity, and even some...well, with my family, it went really well. They believed me because they knew I wouldn't give up the life I had. With my husband's family, it was a lot more stressful, because they really didn't understand that sometimes I would have a good day and I could go to an event for 20 or 30 minutes, and then have to leave and go back home.
And it would make them feel like... I thought I was trying. I was getting out of bed and I was going to do something, and I did it as long as I could, and then we would leave. And they took it as I was being rude, and obnoxious, and trying to get all the attention for myself, when really, I was just struggling but also trying to be involved at the same time, and I lost that ability.