I was diagnosed with a rare genetic condition known as Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome in early 2016 following a lifetime battle for my health and wellness. I never expected one day to wake up and lose all ability to stand but that is what happened.
[Video Description: Dawn Marie using a video filter that makes her face a Zebra. Dawn has long brown hair parted to the side with several gray streaks throughout the front of her hair. There is a set of glasses atop her head. Dawn looks at the camera and says My name is Dawn Marie and I’m a medical zebra!]
Since my diagnosis, my whole life makes better sense than ever!
While I’m not happy to be sick, its nice to finally have a name for this invisible plague responsible for taking me away from life all too often!
Below is an artistic representation of Chronic Illness Life with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. Please excuse my Zebras swirly stripes. I drew this on a bad day and couldn’t remember how zebra stripes are patterned so it ended up being a swirly Zebra print. Creative expression is my best coping tool for all the losses this genetic illness serves.
I’m thankful for my art and writing because it gives meaning to my life in a time I might despair because I can no longer work nor participate in life the way I did before my total disability. If I could go back and change it, I would’ve thrown myself into my creative endeavors instead of damaging my body in a career field that chewed me up and spat me back out worse off than before. It might be wishful thinking but it is the thought that counts. Right? Well then…