. . . in the pagan year, there is a ceremony or a ritual or something being marked, every six weeks, across the year, and that that gives hope for anybody who is currently suffering, because you are never far away from the next moment when you can get together and when you can celebrate. But also, it gives you a sense of time passing, which is really helpful when you’re struggling, because time can begin to drag, and you can get mired in hopelessness. But actually, you get a kind of marker of your progress, so the next time that something comes up in the calendar, you can feel how far away you actually are from the last time you celebrated, and that that helps you to move through, and you can start to look towards the next one, and a pleasure in the next one, perhaps, as a way of dividing up those long months.
Time flies, Imbolc is past us. The German feast day on the 2nd of February is called Maria Lichtmess (Mary's candlemass), the day Mary blows out the candle that was lit by St. Martin in November - yet another pagan ritual customized by the churches. Godlovethem.
My Franconian grandmother would declare, an Lichtmess ich mein Brot bei Licht ess' (on the day of candlemass I can eat dinner by daylight). It is also my sister's birthday and we managed a polite phone call. Even laughter.
My year is usually split into quarter sections dictated by my health insurance. Every three months, I have to show my face and my insurance card to my GP to prove my existence and to collect prescriptions and referrals. And there's the one brief immunologist appointment every three months.
When I was first diagnosed with my shitty disease, I was in despair about this, waiting from one of these appointments to the next, the gap seemed enormous and so much could happen, what if I go deaf or blind or the kidneys pack it in or what if I die, until I finally accepted that checking on a chronic condition every three months or so is the way it's done. In between, nobody is holding your hand, you just have to make the best of it. (And you are supposed to keep a record of symptoms.)
So, you get quite blasé about it all after a while, you forget about the record soon enough, nothing life threatening happens, and by now you barely register the clumps of blood on your tissue every morning after your sinuses start to clear. Because even if it's a fair bit and has been going on for what, weeks, months (?), it's not a nose bleed, just lumpy stuff, and you know, it's crusts that count. Crusts, you have been told, mean vascular tissue damage, lumpy clumpy stuff is just plain boring bleeding sinus membranes.
Also, the digestive system can be far more variable than you were told to believe. Two weeks of painful bloating nausea is considered acceptable under the circumstances unless it's accompanied by constant constipation and, here we go again, blood. Don't bother to get alarmed.
And anyway, the date for the annual full colonoscopy/endoscopy is set (for June).
Fatigue? Brain fog? Rest is a good thing and don't expect too much at your age. After all, this is a chronic illness.
You scrape by, from day to day, to week to week, quarter to quarter. From Imbolc to Ostara to Beltaine to midsummer. On and on.