It Would Be Better If People Understood

Franca Gimenez

It would be much better if I wasn’t tired all the time. Any activity from having a shower to partaking in a lecture just exhaust me. The thought of having to get out of bed to do anything is exhausting. People think I’m lazy and that I can’t be bothered. I wish I was lazy. I wish that I could put my failures down to laziness. It’s easy. But I’m not lazy. In fact, I’m eager to achieve, to learn, to enjoy life. But you can’t when you’re tired all the time. You can’t go out with friends when it gets to 10:30pm and you’re falling asleep. You can’t read books for long because you end up falling asleep and usually losing your page. You cant attend every lecture because sometimes you wake up unable to move or think or feel.

It would be much better if I wasn’t ill all the time. Some people would say I’m faking it or that I’m exaggerating.

“You’re always sick”
“What’s wrong now?”

It’s not an excuse. I spend hours in bed in pain or being sick. My stomach is victim to my emotions. Stress causes stomach pains which then causes stress which then makes it worse. It’s a cycle, much like everything else. It’s not in my head. It has physical effects. Sometimes my head is so cloudy that I can’t think. I wake up confused, unsure of my surroundings or who I am. Sometimes my head is so heavy with this confusion that I can’t function properly. I get headaches from stress and even when I sleep, I have stressful dreams.

It would be much better if I wasn’t so anxious. I used to think it was normal to be anxious about little things. I revolved my whole life around it thinking that everyone did the same. But they don’t. Getting up 2 hours before a lecture simply to just convince myself it’s okay to leave the house is not normal. Putting aside 10 minutes in an exam for the inevitable panic attack and therefore cutting my exam time is not normal. Crying because I’m so stressed about putting my rice steamer in the microwave is not normal. Constantly looking around, hearing people laugh and thinking it’s directed at me. This state of constant anxiety dictates my life.

It would be so much easier if I didn’t cry all the time. I’m not a wimp nor am I a baby. The tears are involuntary. Sometimes it’s over something silly like dropping pasta on the floor. Sometimes it’s over nothing. Sometimes its due to pure frustration that I can’t explain myself. How am I expected to put my feelings into words when I don’t know what I’m feeling in the first place?

It would be much better if people understood. If they understood that I’m not pathetic or making things up, that I’m not faking it or exaggerating things, then it would be easier. The hardest part is feeling like you’ve let people down, that people don’t believe you. A self-fulfilling prophecy is created. You start believing them and not believing in yourself.

It would be better if the people around me knew how much I appreciated them. It’s hard to show that kind of gratitude. They are all like buoys in a turbulent sea for me to hold onto and keep afloat. They are all patient and kind and love me when I can’t love myself.

It would be better if I wasn’t like this. But I am. It’s the way that it’s going to be. I can’t erase it. I can deal with it though. TC mark

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