What I wish you knew about my dynamic disability…

• My disease was switched on by a virus. It can happen to you, too.

• Post-viral syndrome feels like a combination of a concussion and the flu following the completion of even simple tasks like doing laundry, getting groceries, showering.

• My condition is relapsing and remitting, which means I have periods where my symptoms worsen, followed by moments of respite. Those moments of respite do not mean that I’m any less sick.

• Your opting to mask in essential indoor spaces (pharmacy, grocery store, public transit) makes our lives less compressed, dangerous, and daunting.

• Sharing well-wishes like “I hope you feel better soon!” and the like with your chronically-ill friends is not supportive. Not all of us will get better. If you’re aiming to be supportive, consider bringing them a meal, some groceries, or offering to pick up their meds.

• Grieving the life you had before you were sick is okay and necessary and doesn’t detract from disability pride.

• Everything you’ve been taught under capitalism about productivity, striving, and endurance no longer applies with a chronic condition.