Friday, April 23, 2010


Something I struggle a lot with is not feeling like I fit the mold of a "typical college student". I get exhausted so easily that I don't normally go out. I am 21 years old and I never go to the bars or clubs around town and I hardly ever go to just regular parties. There are a few of reasons for this:

1. Besides having lupus, I don't like the feeling of being drunk at all. I don't get it. I only like to drink to the point where I am "friendly". Whether due to my medications or my body chemistry or whatever else, it does not take much to get me "friendly".

2. Then there is the lupus itself. Just the energy of dressing up and looking cute can make me sleepy and achy. I really am no fun when I get like this and my friends notice it right away and it brings them down too. I hate not being able to do these things, and share in these experiences, but I really am miserable by about two hours in.

3. The recuperation period for me takes a long time, and I simply don't have much time. Between my six classes and two jobs, I don't really have the time to spend trying to recover. It's much easier for me to do things that I know won't take a lot out of me.

The reason I am writing this post is because I am currently sitting at home, 100 miles away from school about to go to bed at 10:45, and the rest of my school is partying it up. It's basically our spring weekend and there are parties and dances all around campus. I was so exhausted and out of it I decided not to drive home and spend my money (oh, my precious money) to skip work today and take the bus home.

But after all this, I still have to ask the question "What is normal?" I have to accept that this is what it is for me. College students come in all varieties, so fitting some media induced or stereotypical mold is not realistic. Maybe one day I will actually come to accept this.


TheRealCherish said...

Normal is whatever you want it to be, just make sure it's as exciting as you can make it! Memories are so important. My best friend of 25 years (we're 30 now) has lupus and was diagnosed in college. Some nights she is determined to hang out for an hour or even the whole night on a good day, just so she can spend time with folks when she can. Because there are definitely days when getting out of the bed to go somewhere is not gonna happen for her. Just make sure you (this is so cliche) live life to the fullest! If your "fullest" is going to dinner with friends for 2 hours, or popping into the lounge for only 30 minutes, then do what you can and make the best of it! Probably easier said than done... LOL... but just make sure that your "normal" is as memorable as your body allows you to make it. Forget what other folk's "normal" is!!

Oh, and I totally feel you on the "getting dressed" part... I have made flat boots and shoes a staple in my going out wardrobe, which makes it a bit more casual, but I always have more fun when I'm comfy!

SR said...

hey... this post really hit home for me... i'm a grad student living with lupus... and i'm doing the same thing. sitting at home while everyone else in my class is partying it up...

it's tough to figure out what's "normal" ... but i think that's one of the things that lupus forces you to realize: that is only "normal" if you choose to see it that way. there are thousands of college kids that choose not to go out and party, after all.. i think the tough part for me was that i felt like it wasn't me that was making the decision not to go out - it was the lupus.