For most of my life I have not talked a lot about my CIDP. I felt like if I did not talk about it, then I did not have to think about it. And if I did not think about it, then I could pretend like nothing was wrong. But, as I am preparing for my trip to Chicago I find myself actually facing my disease for the first time in my life. CIDP is not only physically debilitating, but it also takes an emotional tool on those suffering.
Uncertainty. Loss. Worthlessness. These are some thoughts that I have felt.
Uncertainty about the future: Will I be able to play pass in the yard with my daughters? Will I get to teach my daughters how to drive? Will I dance at my daughter's wedding?
I start feeling sorry for my about the things I am unable to do (Loss). Then those feelings spill over to a sense of Worthlessness.
When I was younger, I never really felt any of those things. I remember feeling that God knew I was strong enough to handle this. I almost took it as a challenge between mind and body. However, as I got married, had two beautiful daughters, bought a house, those feelings began to surface more and more.
A little of a year ago I was truly at bottom. I had just resigned my football coaching position, and I was mad and sad all at the same time. I hated my CIDP. I felt like I had lost my purpose. For the first time in my life, I felt like God was giving me more than I could handle.
Then I hit a point where even I had enough of my self-pity. I took that anger and frustration and channeled it into a search for answers. I began scour the internet looking for the "cure for CIDP". As I searched web page after web page I began reading bits and pieces about a stem cell procedure being done at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. The information I found gave me hope; and, hope can be powerful medicine.