Disclaimer: I am a marketing writer, not a poet. But, I thought I would share this little ditty with you. SICK Inspired by Shel Silverstein’s poem of the same name: http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/16480 My name is Janet Keeley and I have a weird disease. It snuck up on me quickly And then worsened by degrees. It started 16 months ago I just got really tired. Then pain and muscle cramps set in And in sickness I was mired. I couldn’t think of words for things. I was at a loss. As a writer I was lucky That I am my own boss. To find out what was wrong with me I saw doctors left and right. Some gave a diagnosis. Others told me, “You’re alright.” “It’s Lyme Disease.” “It’s mono.” “It’s depression.” “It’s your blood.” I felt like I was drowning In an information flood. They poked and prodded and all agreed On the diagnosis of last resort. “It’s Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” they said. I wasn’t happy with this report. Family practitioner, immune specialist, pulmonologist, Orthopedist… all agreed. They all were confident that they knew Exactly what I would need. “Take this drug, supplement, shot, IV,” they each would excitedly say. “If you inject kutapressin in your leg for three months, I know it will go away!” “Buy this,” “Do this,” “Eat this,” they said. Each of them sincere. And I, so desperate for help, listened with eager ear. For three months I had a horrific cough Miserable each day. And for three months I had stomach issues So awful I cannot say. Fevers, aches and shooting pains Along with extreme fatigue. Are things I live with daily. Every doctor is intrigued. This disease with such an awful name… It sounds like I’m just tired. I’m told that millions have it And a new name has been inspired. Myalgic Encephalopathy. Ah but what’s in a name? It doesn’t make a difference to me. I’m still sick all the same. To do my daily work I have to Take a nap or two. To meet a friend for lunch I also Have to take one to renew. To go for drinks or dinner I have to rest to make it there. Getting ready entails so much more Than just fixing my short hair. Acupuncture and therapeutic massage Help my body feel relaxed. And psychotherapy relieves my Emotions that are overtaxed. When friends ask how I’m doing I say, “Oh, I’m just fine.” When deep inside I know fair well That I have just been lying. Sixteen months and now I’m Seeing a new physician. And he and I are working hard To accomplish our new mission. To repair my adrenals, my thyroid, My immune system, my heart. To find a way to give my body A chance at a brand new start. It’s day by day… Sometimes hour by hour. But something gets me through. Please know that many times That something has been you!