Thursday, April 24, 2008

Stress Relief on the CO 

Sometimes people say to me, "Xanthia, you sure do have a positive attitude considering all the shit you have to live with. How do you stay so up beat and happy?" Of course I'm paraphrasing here but I am taken aback at how often I actually hear people comment on my positive attitude and marvel at it as if they expect me to become some insufferable bastard just because life handed me the short, snotty, blood encrusted end of the stick. I have a theory about that.

Gimps, the disabled, the chronically sick, the survivors of cancer, those lucky, rare members of the "Mystery Disease Club" (I'm trying to trademark that name by the way) must be (in a word) GRACIOUS. It's human instinct to separate the sick from the healthy, to travel with a healthy herd. However, if you are extremely sick and your prognosis leaves you with a fifty percent chance of joining the wheelchair brigade your only option for keeping the friends you have (you know, the ones that didn't ditch you when they found out you were sick) and for making new friends is by becoming gracious - exuding the kind of lust for life that contradicts or even mocks your state of being. If I was a little bit bitchy but I was healthy and "normal" I might be forgiven but if I was a little bit bitchy as a sick person - I would be entirely alone.

But all that is only a minor consideration when compared to the lovely, self congratulatory gift you can give to the people who can say, "...ya know, *I* have a friend who has MS and she has a really great attitude about life. She is so amazing, she could wind up paralyzed in a wheel chair at any time but she still knows how to have fun."

Don't hate me. It's the truth.

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