“The Spoon Theory” is a popular article among those living with a chronic illness; however, I find it generally offensive. Yes, it may help to explain to those unfamiliar with my daily life the amount of time I have to spend daily managing my illness, but it comes across as attention-seeking and dramatic. My life has been full of more than enough drama due to Behcet’s for one lifetime, and I don’t care to view every task, no matter how mundane or meaningful, through the eyes of Behcet’s,
Behcet’s isn’t my entire life, it is simply one facet of my life. Spend a day in my shoes, and you will quickly realize that I spend my days juggling a thousand other responsibilities. Yes, I have to follow doctor’s orders, take my meds, manage my primary and secondary symptoms, and deal with chronic pain, but I cannot allow that to control my life; I choose to be in charge of my illness, instead of letting it dictate my life. I don’t want to wake up and put limits on my day – I want to see how much I can squeeze into it. I have spent months at a time on bedrest; I have been hospitalized for weeks at a time; I’m constantly changing meds and adjusting to new side effects; I know what it’s like to have your life stopped by an illness. I have tasted that, and I cherish each day that I do not have to endure those conditions.
I go about my life, and Behcet’s conforms to my lifestyle. Yes, I make accommodations, but I do everything I can to not allow one facet of my life to affect the others. Obviously, if I’m recovering from surgery, I will have limitations. The first month on an immunosuppressant requires me to limit my activity. But the rest of the time, I pack up my meds and go about my business. Flares or no flares, I have things to do. People rise to the expectations that you set for them – I choose to keep expectations for my life high.