Bruises

I have multiple conditions that require that I bruise easily, and I always feel bruised after slight bumps but it isn’t until weeks after the injury that I start to show bruising.

In my early life I thought this was a good thing. It meant that my father’s abuses wouldn’t show and therefore I was a better child. This was directly reflecting the attitudes in my home. In fact my lack of bruising often caused my family to ignore the seriousness of some of my injuries, which has lead me to my current state of disability.

I have wondered often in my life on many topics from “Is Nicolai Tesla Autistic?” on through, “Why does Sylvani try and nurse milk but can drink water?” This is one of the topics I have mulled over the longest. My doctor’s offered no explanations, which at first disconcerted me. We are raised in the US to believe that our doctor’s are all knowing and the ones who behave like Gregory House are the ultimate in doctors.

This prevents people from asking questions, this makes it harder for a disabled person or a person with a yet to be diagnosed chronic illness to be taken seriously. If said person has a vagina and breasts on their person they are going to have to fight to have the slightest ailment taken care of muchless a more serious issue. I became highly aware of this when I started self diagnosing.

Self diagnosing is a huge no no, as this gets one labelled a hypochondriac, even if the questions are meant in an innocent fashion. In my case it was little moments where I met someone with a disorder, such as Reynaud’s the circulatory condition. My case is actually worse than this person’s and as I asked her questions about her disorder and found I had literally every symptom I began to worry. She was nice about it and we both believed I had the same condition. It helped that I would turn blue faster when it was cold or when I was stressed.

The adults ignored the physical symptoms and decided I was somatizing. So I learned to keep my mouth shut and stay away from doctors. I thought for a long time my mother was absolutely right about the medical world. At times I wonder if her experiences with medicine and their misdiagnosis are why she doesn’t go to a doctor, but I feel more certain that it is because an abuser also wants their victims kept away from medicine. This is a part of why people die from abuse so readily. If you cannot get a doctor and have internal bleeding, you are screwed.

Over the years I have never once had an answer for why I bruise so slowly. This has inhibited my ability to know if i am injured in areas where I am numb if the skin is not split, sometimes the skin splits don’t show for a while as well. For example when I was injured on the paratransit. It took me almost a week to figure out that I really was hurt. This was between my spinal cord injury, slow bruising, and the signals from my brain putting the pain in my right leg between my hip or my knee when the wound was touched. I couldn’t find anything in the area my brain TOLD me was hurt.

I am thinking on the life long ramifications of my body’s build. I know, at least I hypothesis, why I don’t bruise like someone with Ehlers-Danlos usually does. Not only because no two humans with the same medical illnesses are identical, even identical twins have interior differences, but a confluence of small veins and low circulation has kept me from being black and blue.

Every blood draw I have had I am faced with a phlebotamist’s lament about the smallness of my veins. Every time I have to convince a doctor that I have EDS, I must point out the fact that not every patient has the significant bruising and though I feel my bruises they don’t always show. It isn’t the excuse given before about deep tissue bruising. Not every bruise is going to be in my muscles, and those hurt in a whole different way. No, my lack of bruising is a lack of blood flow to the injury.

I started thinking on this yesterday as I woke up from my nap and my face resembled a chipmunk. The dislocations were atrocious yesterday, so my face shows the marks still. Perhaps I bruise less because my blood is busy swelling up my head, or my hands, or anywhere but where I expect too.

I can go back to my next task. Between halloween preparations I have been watching every James Bond movie that has been produced, all 22 of them. This is a painful excercise yet it has a purpose. I decided to find out the evolution of the Bond Girl. I remember loathing Halley Berry’s portrayal and being uncertain as to why, so I decided to investigate. I am not liking my findings. I suspect some people may deem them controversial!

Also a reminder: I am not planning to write during October. October is my runaround like a chicken partying month, so I shall resume my current scampering.

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4 Comments

  1. I hope you’re feeling better now! And how is Sylvani? Also, PLEASE post your findings on the origin of Bond Girl (jeez she doesn’t even have her own separate identity) when you can.

  2. I am working on it. At the moment of this comment I have four more bond movies to go and then I can write. It’s a bit torture like to see what evolves but I will tell you now there is little evolution away from racism and sexism, it gets worse in some goes and a tad bit better… I haven’t even gotten to the one where they try and make a feminist Bond Girl. I swear I am ready to start murdering film makers though. I would take a break but that prolongs my torture.

    Vani will get his own post (yes HIS) in a couple of days once I finish some kitty cat advocacy but healthwise he’ll be just fine. We did booster vaccines, dewormer, and the vet said that the horns on his paws tearing off is good and trimmed some of them to help Vani walk a bit better. I didn’t write much about Vani’s obvious neglect issues on my blog when he got here because I was busy fixing them but the shelter really screwed up. Enough so that my catvocacy (heeeh) may end in me suing this state funded shelter for the abuse of my cat and the other issues that they caused. They gave me either the wrong cat or can’t tell a girl from a boy, inhibited the spay/nueter process, and gave Vani an expired rabies vaccination. When I got vani his claws had grown INTO his paw pads which means there was no cat scratching post. I had to break and cut them before I could trim them.

    Vani never fought me on that even when we (my carer assisted me) had to use pliers to pull the claw tips out of the horns on his feet. They started tearing and splitting but we have a home care regimen and Vani’s been given an injection of antibiotic so we’re good on that. Neither of us have to take more pills this week that smell like icky boy feet.

    The rest is all pending. Either way this shelter, which is the animal rights authority in the area it serves, needs investigation and they will be paying Vani’s medical bills. If there is any doubt, I am keeping Sylvani. Gender doesn’t matter to me as much as the level of love and “fit” in my house. Vani was a perfect match just the unintended one. Though giving me the wrong cat means the wrong history, medical information, and explains their suspicious behaviors.

  3. Kateryna, I found this post very moving. I was also abused as a child, but I have no memory of any physical marks. For a long time, I thought that meant that I really hadn’t experienced abuse. It wasn’t until I had a chest x-ray in college and the doctor noted the healed bruises on my ribs that I understood the severity of what had happened.

    Interesting, too, that your mother stayed away from doctors, as that was the pattern for my mother and grandmother as well. My mother died of a brain tumor that she didn’t know she had, despite the fact that she had a number of pronounced symptoms that a doctor would have recognized immediately. Instead, she collapsed one day and died a month later. Perhaps she saved herself a world of pain–who knows?–but for myself, I’d prefer to know what was going on and how/whether to treat it.

  4. I have learned by asking that most abusers try to keep their victims from a doctor. Medical professionals can identify abuse because the wounds are consistent and it’s hard to fake an injury by claiming it’s something else. This is a fact that has pushed me to stay in contact with my doctors and helped me to figure out much faster that my exhusband was abusive. He kept preventing me from getting my pain medications and even seeing my pharmacologist, who doesn’t deal with the blood and gore of most medicine just the pain part. I say just but pain is disabling too so his job is a big deal.

    I am grateful for your love and blessings and I sorrow that any child past tense or present is wounded and knows the shadows. I hope you continue to heal and thank you for taking the time to comment on and read my blog.


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