It took way too long for us to figure it out, and that figuring is a story unto itself that is too long for this post, but I have Long Covid. The impact can best be summed up thusly: it is a disability, not a disease.
Disease suggests that I might get better. I wouldn’t mind getting better, of course, but as of this writing there’s not only no cure, there’s no consistent treatment, and many medical professionals will mis-diagnose Long Covid, or even deny that it exists.
So, disability. The “disabled” demographic is perhaps the only marginalized minority group that everyone who lives long enough will eventually join. My own disability presents itself much like chronic fatigue (ME/CFS). On some days I’m fine. On others I may find myself light-headed and struggling for breath as if I’d just run a mile when all I’ve done is stand around in the kitchen talking to to the kids.
Please don’t send us your medical advice. That “too long for this post” story begins with two years of visits to specialists wherein we ruled out all of the usual suspects. You may have heard the old aphorism “when you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras.” We’ve ruled out the horses, and looking around at the (metaphorical) scenery, we’re not in Kansas anymore, this is the Serengeti.
But I’m not here to ask for help, or to garner sympathy. I’m here by way of explanation: the things I used to do, the things I still WANT to do? I can’t do all of them anymore. I’d love to be creating a daily comic strip and reviewing 1st-run movies on the day they arrive in my local cinema, but those aren’t options for me anymore. The point of this post, which I’ll admit I’ve taken my time getting around to, is to explain what I can do, and what you can expect.
First and foremost: Schlock books in print! This is taking longer than we wanted it to, but we have a plan and we have the ability, and we hope to get books 18, 19, and 20 in print over the course of the next 12 to 18 months.
Seventy Maxims Reprint! This coming Tuesday we’re launching a Backerkit project to reprint the Seventy Maxims books, and as part of that we’ll be doing an all-on-one-page Seventy Maxims poster. Click either of the links above for the pre-launch page.
Using My Powers for Good: I’ll be posting parts lists and instructions for some of the mobility and workplace aids we’ve custom-built for me. Long Covid affects millions of people worldwide, probably tens of millions, and this little platform of mine can be used to make their lives easier.
Reviews of Movies, Games, and More: I can’t offer reviews of new-release cinematic things because I don’t go to the theater anymore, but I do still consume a lot of media, and it’s quite easy for me to write reviews. In fact, the fancy zero-gravity chair I use to keep my heart rate manageable is the same one I’m sitting in while I write this AND while I watch TV, listen to music, and read.
I’m Not Letting This Stop Me: Yes, I’m disabled. I can’t do all the things I used to do, and I can’t do them as quickly, but I can still do quite a bit. So I shall do quite a bit. And this place is where you’ll always be able to find me doing it.
I hope you’ll come back and find me again soon.