Not only am I grieving for my old self. I am grieving the loss of those friends that have slowly slipped away from my grasp. Like sand through my fingers people have slipped away from me since I became chronically ill. It isn’t catching!
I am still the same person who you have known for years. I may no longer be the strong person that I was but I am still ME. My values are still the same, loyalty and respect and I would do anything for a friend, anything. If the shoe was on the other foot I would go out of my way to be there for my friends and even be there for people which I’m not particularly close with.
It is actually harder to go through the slow agonising realisation that your friends no longer have time for you and that you don’t matter anymore. Constantly checking your phone for the text that you hope will come but never does. All of a sudden your phone becomes quiet. The 3 most important things in my life are my family, my friends and my job and I have lost 2 of the things that I value above all else. I try to fill my days with things to make up for these loses but nothing can fill the gaping hole my former friends and former job have left.
I am left feeling like a leper.