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Category: disability

What I’m telling family about COVID-19

A family member asked me to tell them about COVID-19. It was a general question, which I chose to interpret as “how does transmission work, and what is the real risk?” This is what I said. As I told them, I’m not a biologist of any sort, and I will accept corrections (both from people who are biologists and from those who can cite sources), of course. Both this person and I have autoimmune issues, so I take that as a given in this post.


I usually do a year-end post. That’s not happening in 2017. This year took so much from me, and from people I care about, that I refuse to write about it. But I’d like to write about 2018. Not “resolutions” so much as “plans and goals”—and maybe not even those…

On chronic illness (and other disabilities) as perceived imposition

We have this ideal, in American society, of a “low maintenance” person, and I get the sense that the ideal is especially important for women to meet. We should be easygoing. We should not complain, and whatever is offered to us should be enough, should be accepted with gratitude. We must never impose on others. Taken to its logical conclusion, it also means suffering should be done in silence.

Chronic illness: wrecking all your plans

I’m a good project planner, great with logistics. I had backup plans for my backup plans. But I also had a chronic illness to contend with, and the one place where I should have known to build in extra leeway—the parts involving physical labor and the ability to sleep soundly in adverse conditions—were the parts where everything went sideways. And, oddly, they were the parts for which I’d done the least contingency planning.