In reading through blogs of other chronic patients, I realize that so often, we’re defined but what has happened to us. Forgotten is that underneath the layer of disease and all its accompanying layers of adaptation exists a real human being with feelings. Sometimes, it’s helpful to take a glimpse at what’s at the core, who this person is at heart.

In that spirit, I took the opportunity to interview Lydia. We normally get the impression that she’s adamant about certain rights, she’s in dire need of help at home, she struggles with self-image (at least with regard to her blog), and her life is all about text (because she hardly ever posts pictures). Does this interview change your impression of her? Is there more to her than her disease?? Does she sound like someone you wish lived next door to you???

1. When you imagine yourself in a better place, what does it look like? Who’s there with you?

I recently have been imagining motherhood; I think my hormones are to blame for that one! I think about what it would be like to have a child, them as a baby or as a toddler, how it would be when they got older. I wonder whether they will look like me, or my husband; whose eyes they will get, things like that. In a way it makes me sad, because right now none of that is possible, but I still find myself idly thinking about it. That’s the general way it goes – I imagine the things I’m not capable of, but really want.

2. Name one virtue that describes yourself. Explain why.

I have thought about so many virtues that I want to be able to describe myself with, but I know how much I lack them! I don’t think that I could truthfully say “I am this…” just yet, although I want to be. In a way that has lead me to pick this one: the ability to grow. I know that I make mistakes and I always will; I hope that I will always learn from them too, and always be willing to say sorry. As I have heard quoted, “I am not who I want to be, but thank God! I am not who I was.”

3. If you gave us a tour of your hometown, what things would you point out? Where are your fondest memories?

I think I would like to point out sites of historical significance, and talk about the little stories that accompany them (the Art Gallery was accidentally built back-to-front, causing the architect to kill himself. My husband took me there on one of our first dates); I would take you to our favourite tea shop (which is sadly not wheelchair accessible, but does have outside seating). I would want to share the love I have for my city with you, and hope that you find you love it too!

4. Do you have a favorite color?

Sometimes. I really like purples, but then I also like black, and bright “azure” blue, and the green of my husband’s eyes (and so on…).

There you are. A portrait of someone who lives on the other side of chronic illness.




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