Sunday, July 28, 2013

For those whom CFS has placed in solitary confinement

I KNOW what the caged bird feels, alas!
When the sun is bright on the upland slopes;
When the wind stirs soft through the springing grass,
And the river flows like a stream of glass;
When the first bird sings and the first bud opes,
And the faint perfume from its chalice steals —
I know what the caged bird feels!

I know why the caged bird beats his wing
Till its blood is red on the cruel bars;
For he must fly back to his perch and cling
When he fain would be on the bough a-swing;
And a pain still throbs in the old, old scars
And they pulse again with a keener sting —
I know why he beats his wing!

I know why the caged bird sings, ah me,
When his wing is bruised and his bosom sore,—
When he beats his bars and he would be free;
It is not a carol of joy or glee,
But a prayer that he sends from his heart's deep core,
But a plea, that upward to Heaven he flings —
I know why the caged bird sings!
* * *
I've often compared CFS to the punishment inflicted on the worst prisoners: confined to a space little larger than your bed, solitary confinement -- you can't go out to see friends and they don't come to visit you. 
But Amnesty International doesn't care about us.  Patients are ignored, abused by the doctors they should be able to trust, and some literally are locked up (in mental wards).
I feel like a caged bird, but when you need to crawl the 4.5 feet from the bed to the bathroom, you can't go out to enjoy life's pleasures.  If you're single/divorced as a result of men being unable to cope with your illness, no one brings those little things to you.  When online grocery delivery first started, I could get food, but not flowers -- and when you have no income because you're too sick to work but the judge says you're not sick enough to get Disability, even $10 for a bouquet from the grocery store is a major splurge, you can't afford $50 several times a month to have a florist bring you flowers to lift your spirits.

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