*Warning: discussion of health issues and bodily fluids will ensue. You’ve been warned.*
So I have a health issue known as Edema. My body swells up with excess fluid. I take a drug daily to help me pee out the excess liquid, but lately it’s not as effective as it once was. After I take it, I need bathroom breaks about every 30 to 60 minutes for a couple of hours as the drug works it’s magic. Mostly, the swelling is limited to my feet. Mostly. The swelling can also be painful; it’s very rarely painful enough to interfere with walking, but sometimes that happens too.
I was just at a Steampunk convention in Detroit over the weekend, and my Edema was in rare form. I almost couldn’t get my shoes on on Saturday, making me late for a group photo event I had looked forward to. In fact, I missed the event entirely (it was short) though I did get there in time to snap a few photos of the group in our uniforms. Still, it was really depressing. Usually, mornings are when the swelling is at its lowest, but not that day.
I also wear compression stockings. Sexy, they are not. What they ARE is hot, itchy, and the nylon doesn’t breathe at all, making me prone to acquiring athlete’s foot infections. I hate wearing them. Hate. I tend not to wear the stockings much in the summer, especially if I’m wearing shorts. This, however, means I’ll pay for it with increased swelling for a couple of days afterwards. It’s a trade-off, and sometimes the timing of the downside is unpredictable.
My Edema is one of many signs of getting older. While I understand this on an intellectual level, emotionally I’m not ready for my body to start breaking down quite so soon. I’d hoped for at least another decade before I started to fall apart. It’s depressing, though thankfully, it’s the worst of my health problems for now.
It also means that I may have to stop cosplaying. I enjoy Steampunk events, but if I’m stuck in my room for an extra hour every morning because I can’t get my shoes on, I’m going to miss an awful lot of stuff. There is enough disappointment in my life right now without intentionally adding to it.