It has been hinted at by family that I may be spending too much time alone. "It isn't healthy" they say "you will just dwell on yourself" or "it will make the pain seem worse". I listen, trying not to react, roll my eyes or say something that will be misconstrued or offend anyone. So I pondered. Am I isolating? Why, yes I am.
Why I isolate is partly self preservation, partly sanity driven and mostly comforting. What I mean by all this is I want to isolate. Few people understand what I am dealing with, the constant pain, fatigue, and aches plus other varying maladies. Add to that questions regarding why I can go to the grocery store but I cannot work (are you kidding), do I really need the cane (only if I don't want to fall over) and is CFS/fibromyalgia real cause someone told me it isn't (well if it isn't someone should come and tell my body).
I isolate to keep my sanity by surrounding myself with familiarity, warmth, smells and noise levels that I can tolerate plus no one with questioning looks when I use my handicapped placard. People do not understand that odors, noises and other environmental factors can increase my discomfort. Large gatherings of people can stress me out. Sometimes just the thought of certain events makes me ill.
I suppose it is possible that some will think I am developing a phobia and that I am scared to leave my home. Nonsense. I can leave but on my terms if possible. If I am allowed to plan it increases the odds that the outing will be successful or at least tolerable.
I am trying to get better. That is always my goal but I also have to live in this body so some level of acceptance is important as well. Maybe I will not have to isolate as much someday but, for now, it is necessary. Necessary for my sanity. Necessary for my body. Necessary for me.