As a teenager, I fantasized about dating a doctor. We’d go to swanky restaurants, laugh, and talk about the strength of the human body. In my mid twenties, I was finally getting to experience that fantasy in real-life. When I swiped right on a man who was a chiropractor and owned a sports chiropractic clinic, I figured it was close enough to the doctor title to at least give it a try. He also was a published author, won multiple awards in his field, and regularly worked with the affluent community in our metropolis. The date with the doctor however, was everything but the fantasy I imagined.keep reading…
A Journey of Self Discovery w Mr. Computer Programmer
If you’ve been following this blog, you know we share openly our own self discovery journey. This is no exception. In the following story, I pull from my early twenties memory banks about a one night stand that I was certain would lead me into a free fall about my own sense of worth and feelings of desperation. My goal has always been to fall in love. What I didn’t realize, was falling in love requires you to love yourself first.keep reading sis…
My heart has been shattered almost as many times as my port-o-cath has been accessed. The problem with getting back out there, is well, it requires you to get back out there.Read more sis
I sit there in the waiting room, looking down quietly at my phone as I read the text.
It has only been 2 months since my last hospitalization, a sure sign that Cystic Fibrosis is progressing. My lungs simply…are losing their stability. One chronic infection after another and I am starting to build up resistance to the only medication that exists to save me.
“Can I come up there right now to be with you?” Sure, I’ve had boyfriends feel it was their obligation to visit when I am hospitalized, but to sit with me in the waiting room as I find out what day I will be admitted, as I hack up mucous into sputum cups to send to the lab, as a 3/4 inch needle is attached to my chest…this is new.
I reply that his gesture is entirely unnecessary and I have checked myself into a hospital before, so no need for him to drive 20 minutes to sit with me for the next 30.
The problem is, he’s adamant. He wants to be there. I quit replying to his messages. This is MY life, MY failing health, MY struggle. I’m not ready to share it with a man I just met. Two days later, I’m hooked up to my IV machine and going through chest physiotherapy.
“Can I visit? Can I bring you anything?” He texts. I thought I was ready for love.
As Carrie Bradshaw once said, “I’m looking for love, real love. Ridiculous. Inconvenient. Consuming. Can’t-Live-Without-Each-Other-Love. ” And here, I am, completely vulnerable, with a man who wants to bring me dinner and sit with me in the hospital. Yet…I can’t bring myself to reply.
He never did anything wrong, he never said the wrong thing. He was polite and genuinely cared to be there for me, despite only being on a few dates. So why couldn’t I let him?
I delete the message. And the next.
-I never reply to The Senior Loan Officer again-
I’ve taken awhile off of dating since my body basically started to shut down on me. I look and feel great for the first 5 weeks, but it’s that 6th week where the sound of my coughing overshadows the sound of my laughing. I begin to walk with lungs full of infection, and I know it is time for IVs.
I took the radical decision to quit my day job and go on government help, hopefully to focus on my health enough to extend the time period between IVs an extra week or two. However, in between lifting weights at the gym, I happened to meet a man who repairs helicopters for the Navy locally. We decided to do happy hour at Applebee’s and I was optimistic.
Bulging muscles and a winning smile, we shared sarcastic bantar prior to ordering. Then he asked coyly, “so…what do you do for a living?” First time I’ve ever had to think of an answer. Geesshh…how do I tell the guy who just saw me at the gym- I live off his tax money because any moment I’ll be back on IV therapy fighting a genetic lung disease?! So…naturally…I told a little white lie.
“I work remotely for a nonprofit.” He asked what the hours were like, which I stated, part time. He then started to laugh about how great it must be to roll out of bed in my PJs, go to the gym, put a few hours in. Then said my worst fear, “I could never be that lazy”. Bssh. I never thought I could be either. I never thought in my wildest dreams, a career in being a professional CF patient would be looming.
I quickly changed the subject after saying “yeah, it pays the bills but I read a lot because I get bored quickly”. We laughed a lot and got along very well…that is until CF moment #2 of the night came up. He told a joke unintentionally and I couldn’t help but laugh. For the most part, I didn’t wheeze but held back the cough. And then, it happened. Wretched, flu-like, chesty, mucousal cough. He didn’t seem to notice. Then, it happened again. And again. Hacking over wings and ice tea, I excused myself to the rest room.
I came back to a weird look which I explained, “I’m not contagious, I promise”. Didn’t matter…moment was over. We stayed there for another hour and I was able to hide my cough until the walk to the car. A quick hug later, I am driving off- pretty sure will never hear from him again.
CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: do you have a juicy story of dating with your condition and want to submit it for a feature? msg us!