Tuesday, 16 July 2013

It's so awkward

A few of my friends have told me that they never know if or when they should ask me about my health and transplant process. Since a few people asked, I'm sure that means more people have the same question (that is what the teachers always said).

As in introvert and an awkward person in general, I understand the discomfort. I also do not know what to say to people if they are going through something tough.  I try to avoid those conversations at all possible cost and end up saying something awkward which makes it even more uncomfortable. I am the one who makes the inappropriate joke as a lame attempt to break the ice. So trust me when I say that I get it.

Here is my advice: Please say something. It will probably be uncomfortable and that sucks but if you want to ask more about the situation, please ask. From my perspective, I never know when people are tired of hearing about me rant about my health woes. Honestly, I get tired of hearing people ramble about their health problems (real or imaginary, thanks WebMD, we all have cancer) so in my head everyone is fatigued hearing about my health problems too. I also figure they probably want to talk about something more interesting then the fact that I now diabetes and how depressed that made me because it felt like no matter how much I try I keep having more and more stuff wrong with me and it feels like a losing battle and with diabetes comes circulation problems which can lead to limb amputation and soon I will be legless so boo diabetes. See you are bored already.

But seriously, please don't be afraid to ask me how I'm feeling or coping or if I am absolutely terrified. I might just say 'ok' or 'fine' if I have been talking about it a lot.  However, there will be times when I do want to talk about it more or I want to try to work through the latest thing that is bothering me and I really appreciate knowing that you are there to listen. Honestly, I am uncomfortable bringing it up too.

But really, just say something, anything. I would much rather you say something uncomfortable or make an awkward joke than to avoid me because you are not sure what to say.


Mark Neily said...

Speaking for myself at least, while we don't always keep in touch with you (or any of our friends, really) as much as we should, I do actually want to know how things are going when I ask. This blog has been really great at answering questions, but it occured to me as I'm reading this post that my having questions answered doesn't do you a whole lot of good since you probably can't even tell who's reading it. So my bad on that one :).

On a side note, Allison, the writing's great. You don't really expect to laugh at posts about medical tests, but "people who slap nurses do not get new lungs" is on my short list for quote of the year.

~G said...

I'm always willing to ask you the awkward questions Alley! :) And I get your way of not knowing what to say either.. :) But that what friends are for! so you keep posting, and I'll keep asking/commenting, and we can laugh at all the awkwardness we get to! :D
Say Hi to Isaiah from the two of us..! :)

Alley said...

Thanks Mark! I guess I was asked more about it before I started the blog so hopefully it is easier for people now. But please let me know if you have more questions. I can tell how many 'page views' I have but I never know if it is actual people or the auto-websites scanning for email addresses so it is nice to hear from actual people.