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Lucy Turns Pages: Chronic Illness Guest Post by Tylluan Penry

Chronic Illness Guest Post by Tylluan Penry

I have lived with chronic illness for years now, but still it is not my friend. We tolerate each other and that is all. People often claim that all we need to defeat Covid is a ‘strong immune system.’ I could weep for them, I really could, because my problem is just that, I have a very strong immune system, it is doing its best to kill me. And the best treatment on offer is to suppress it, using the sort of drugs used to prevent transplants from being rejected.

The most interesting theory I can come up with for this state of affairs, is that stress has a lot to answer for. Almost everyone in a similar situation to myself has cited stress as a possible cause for the immune system going into overdrive. I can’t prove it of course and at the moment health professionals aren’t interested in exploring this idea. I’ve even suggested they should bottle whatever is wrong with me as a sort of ‘cure-all’ but I don’t think they will take me up on that.

There were clues that something was amiss long ago, but the most devastating and unexpected symptom was losing my sight. I’d driven about 50 miles to Hay on Wye, and suddenly, in a bookshop, I thought it looked very dark. It turned out that a wide horizontal band of vision in my left eye had disappeared. Just like that. Over the next few days it got worse and worse. It eventually returned, but with some colours, especially blue and yellow, so bleached that they were meaningless. I’d had optic neuritis, and I had more bouts of it in the ensuing years, each leaving its own, dirty, frightening mark.

Of course, I learned to live with this, and many other weird and wonderful symptoms. The doctors did their very best to manage these, but there are limits. The term ‘painkiller’ is a misnomer if ever there was one. ‘Pain reducer’ would be more accurate, and then not always. Also, they come with their own side effects, so that life is reduced to a balancing act.

Life might be tricky, when we have to live with chronic illness. It is, however, considerably better than the alternative…

Author Bio

Tylluan Penry is a pagan solitary witch who has devoted much of her life to teaching about the Craft. She was born and brought up in a family of witches (on her mother’s side) although all they ever did was hex, i.e. they cast curses, which made childhood a horror story in its own right!

She is married, has a large family, including grandchildren, dogs, and lives in a rather ramshackle home with an overgrown garden, together with ghosts, spirits and the Gentle Folk. She has now written and published almost 30 books, both fiction and non-fiction. Most can be found here at the indie press she set up back in 2011:

Some of her fiction is on Kindle under the name T P Penry and her chapter in the anthology, ‘Among the Headstones’ is due out later this month on Amazon.

Tylluan also has a YouTube Channel, with over two hundred videos about solitary witchcraft here:

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