After 11 years of marinating in chronic illness, my ability to work has all but evaporated and I have entered the world of full time disability for the first time in my life. This time of year would normally mark a return to university life after the summer break. Right now, my professor colleagues are putting the final touches on their course syllabi or perhaps are working madly to finish a manuscript before the semester starts, when their attention will scatter as they return to their four jobs in one: educator, mentor, researcher, and administrator. For now, I have a sole focus: to try to improve my health.
As someone who has worked hard since the age of 11, I can’t imagine more than a few weeks going by without engaging in some sort of industry. So far my full time disability has only lasted three months, so the memory of working life is still fresh. But over time, my CV will gather dust, and many years will have passed. I was saddened recently when I read a story about another person with my illness – myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, or ME/CFS.
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