A person holds a microphone to a friend during an interview

A Best Friend's Perspective

This installment was the most surprising to me. I decided to interview my best friend. We met in high school, about 20 years ago. She is the closest person to me. She has been there for me and my son in so many ways.

So, without further ado, here is her interview:

1) When my health deteriorated, how did you handle or adjust to that?

It was difficult seeing you go through all these major life changes and health issues. I knew that irregardless of how upsetting what you were going through was, I knew I wanted to be a source or support for you. To see you go through this entire process has been difficult and at some points heart breaking. However, knowing I could be a source of support and lend you my ear to you meant the world.

2) How do you feel now, after a decade of my health being how it is?

To think that this has gone on a decade already is absolutely crazy. I am just so proud of you and how far you have come. What a curve ball life threw but something great has come out of it. Not only has our friendship grown even closer but you have been able to help millions of disabled people with legislation that YOU worked on and in some cases created. You truly are an inspiration.

3) Have you felt overwhelmed? If so, how do you deal with it?

No, not really. I was always more worried about you and how you were doing. What you were going through was way more overwhelming than being the bystander.

3) Have you ever felt helpless, or upset as my best friend that I can’t always do things?

Of course. I wish that you didn’t have to lead this type of life and be “disabled.” It sucks. I hate there are situations that I can’t prevent or stop.. However, we can't change what reality is so we just adapt to what is possible. It has never changed my view of you. I see you as the same person I met 20 years ago - maybe just a little wiser and experienced.

4) What is the hardest thing you've had to face in dealing with my health?

To see the struggle and heartbreak your disability and medical conditions have caused - depression, body dysmorphia, and insecurities.. Many of which you have come to terms with.

5) Do you prefer me to shield you from the bad days, or disease progression? Or do you want the truth of how things are?

No, I never want you to shield me from what you are going through. I want to be able to be there through everything - to good, the bad, the ugly. I am here for you forever and always.

6) If you could give friends new to this any advice, what would it be?

Always be willing to listen and keep an open mind. Understand that there will be good days and bad days. The best thing you can do is always be there no matter what. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions but be tactful.

8) If you could tell me anything about how you've seen my struggle with my body, what would it be??

You are beautiful regardless of what your body looks like. Bodies are constantly changing. You have gone through so much and have come out so strong that in itself is beautiful. Your body shows the journey you have been on but does not solely define who you are

9) Do you know how much I love you? How your friendship, love and support have helped me through the darkest of times on this journey?

Yes and I feel lucky that I have been able to be by your side during these life changing years. You may feel lucky but I feel just as lucky that you have chosen me to be your confident and support. I will always be here for you no matter what.

Opening the dialogue

It’s always interesting getting her perspective on things. I was not prepared for how emotional her answers would make me. It’s always interesting to see myself through others’ perspectives, especially hers. I know I've tried to hide how bad things have gotten from her. I never wanted to be a burden to her, or burden her with it all. I think we all try to hide things from others, even our closest friends, to protect them.

However, maybe that’s leading to more anger, more miscommunication. The potential loss of friendship.  We should open a dialogue with them about it. Explain what we can and can’t do. Most importantly, make memories together in ways that we can.

Listen to our bodies

I know our health can take a lot from us, but it’s not just us that it’s affecting. It affects those closest to us as well.  We push ourselves, sometimes to the brink of injury or exhaustion.  We need to listen to our bodies, we need to adjust what we do to be within our limitations. We need to adjust and adapt to what we do to have spoons to make these precious memories with those closest to us. I know it’s not easy, I know there will be trials and tribulations. There will also be laughter and joy.

Our friends don’t need everything. They need us, they need our attention, and time. Simple things can make great memories.

Read more of Ambre's interviews here.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Chronic-Hives.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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