CN: anaphylaxis and not taking anaphylaxis seriously, abuse, talking about disabiliy and risk of death
If you ask me if I can teach, it doesn't matter how sick I am, it doesn't matter how symptomatic I am, it doesn't matter how much I can't, I will say yes. And I will do so.
And this is one of the reasons I can't teach.
So yes, I've gone to classrooms with migraines where I couldn't see, speak, or stand. Yes, I've signed up for a summer job while I still had significant enough post concussion syndrome that my doctors were regularly seeing me to monitor how my brain was doing. And yes, I've gone and taught in the middle of anaphylaxis.
Whether or not I "can" do this doesn't mean I should teach when I can't breathe enough to not have my vision go black if I try to walk 5 feet. Whether or not I can pretend, doesn't mean it is safe.
I don't think it is a huge controversional statement that I should not teach a class in the middle of anaphylaxis, while my throat is closing, while I'm producing enough phlegm that I'm emptying tissue boxes, while lying on the ground I'm not sure I'm staying still enough and in a position that keeps me from presyncope but sure that if I rise I'm into it, and yet I have been asked when in that state, if I could teach or if I needed someone to cover.
I said I could teach. And I did it. I got to the room before anyone was there, still not sure how I safely managed it, half sat half laid across pillows with them holding me up, and yet it managed to make it look like it was me being casual - it was a casual situation after all. And had my AAC to explain what was going on, and let people do what I told them to do. Nobody knows you can barely breathe if you're using AAC anyways.
So yeah, under some definitions I can teach in the middle of anaphylaxis. I have. And what should I have been doing? I should have been in the emergency room. I've had plenty of mild anaphyalaxis situations where emergency room wasn't necessary, but when for all I know my blood pressure is crashing given the presyncope feeling, and whether or not it is, sitting not to mention standing, is a question because of the struggle to breathe, that's not a situation to be messing around in.
Except, what I can force myself to do, and what I should do are different. And when the question in my mind, is teach, or leave those children with an adult who is abusive - and even asking me to do this was abusive, there's not a question in my mind that I am protecting those I can protect. It was dangerous and risking my life and truthfully, I couldn't think of any of that in the moment, what I could think was I can find a way do these things for these children. I'll find a way, at the cost of my own health and a risk of my life.
The things we can do, and the things we should do are not the same.
And so often, we're told because we can do things we don't need help.
But no, I can do things, because if I don't children are abused, not because I'm actually capable of it.
And that, can.
That's killing us.
I am just lucky I got away, I was dragged away, I had people who could get me some kind of help I needed, and I wasn't forced into I "can" do this, even at the cost of my life.
Techincalities don't make can't into can.
And no, I can't do this, no matter what you say, and no matter how many times you ask.
(and no, don't ask me)
We can say we can't.
Even when our can't doesn't agree with your idea of can and can't. Even when you'd rather say if we can force ourself at any cost, then we can, even when under every definition we shouldn't spend that much of our own being, because we can't do it, even while forcing ourselves, we can just pretend enough that people who don't care don't notice.
Our lives are worth too much to pretend otherwise
Our lives are worth too much for you decide what we can and can't do.