Monday, April 25, 2016


Many people with chronic illness have to go through years of testing, doctors, and being told it’s “all in their head” before a professional listens and runs the proper tests or gathers the full clinical picture.

Many illnesses are insipid and sneaky. They don’t appear grandly at the door wearing spangles and lace. They crawl in through a loose floor grate and secretly move things around when no one is looking.

Whether you have a chronic illness or not, you’ve likely experienced feeling like people, including health care providers, don’t take you seriously or don’t understand your needs. I was guilty of this occasionally as a nurse, especially for young women who came to our unit with Fibromyalgia as a diagnosis. I regret that (hopefully internal) reaction of skepticism. After all, who did it help?

On Saturday, I'll be drawing a name for a giveaway of a Kindle copy of Grendelsong Issue 2 - A Magazine of Wild Fantasy! (If you don't have a Kindle, you can still win.)

It has NINE short stories and ONE non-fiction essay.

To be eligible leave a comment between now and April 30th with your favorite short story/short story author and why. That will give us all some fun reading!


  1. So hard to choose! I love so many. But I'm going to have to go with Poe. He did so much to shape the American Short Story and I happen to love his stories as well.

    Great post. I can't even imagine what it's like to receive such a diagnosis. Nor can I imagine what it's like to care for someone in a professional capacity who is dealing with that. Nurses are just as brave as their patients, and they can make a positive impact on patients' lives.

  2. Thanks for stopping by! I've put you in the drawing. I also love Poe. He is a master of tone (and a million other things!).

  3. My sister has Lyme Disease (the chronic type), and I have taken her to the Emergency Room (home of the skeptical doctor who is also possibly too busy and/or tired to hide this) more than once ; I have also sat in on therapy sessions with skeptical psychologists who are sure that they know better than she does what is wrong with her. I know my sister is sick- it is darn obvious that she is- and it is hard for me to take their disbelief calmly. I can't imagine how frustrating it must be to be the patient in that situation. I can only remind myself that the doctor is human and probably doing his or her best- and when I fail to remind myself of this, my sister generally reminds me.
    I love your point about skepticism ("Who did it help?"). Great perspective on an important issue.

    1. I'm always surprised by this in others, and then disappointed when I do it! I think we're all guilty of it to some degree, even if we live it. I wish your sister the best, I have a twitter friend that really struggles with chronic Lyme, and I know it causes her a lot of disability.

  4. oh, and here's a great story (not necessarily my all-time favorite, but one that I have recently re-read and find I still love):

    1. Yay! Thank you! I have dropped your name in the hat. :)

  5. Oh crap, I hadn't realized that this was that time sensitive :( That really sucks!

    This is one of those things that seem to fuel my distrust of the medical field. We're all only human and it seems more often than not, people put their own personal opinions and beliefs above the betterment of others. I mean, sure, I'd imagine in the medical field there are countless of hypochondriacs and people self diagnosing via Web MD (good lord stay away from doing that!), but there is that very real dismissiveness that can take places between a health care provider and a patient. And personally I find it to be a scary, harmful one.

    I will stop my ranting!

    Really sorry I missed this giveaway! I know how hard they can be in general to ramp up support for :( I hope it was a lot of fun!

  6. I think it's another case of perspective taking and the willingness to be open-minded. I'd like to believe I've learned to do better.

    I'm sorry you missed it, too. It was fun, and I enjoyed reading the short stories suggested.


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