About bgw for #MedX

This project was produced for the 2016 Stanford Medicine X ePatient Storyteller Track: I am an artist, health advocate and podcaster who has lived with complex chronic illness, and the chronic uncertainty that comes along with it, for more than two decades. As someone juggling multiple invisible illnesses, much of my work has been about visibility, and making visible what has previously been unseen. In my attempts to seek diagnoses and validation, I have used many of the quantitative symptom tracking apps that have been available for iOS in recent years. The Instagram account, @bimpsegetsweird, is my attempt at qualitative self tracking to better capture my quality of life, which has too often been underrepresented in other self tracking data.

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Grief and Everything, All at Once.

One of the challenges of living with complex chronic illness is that when one thing goes wrong, an avalanche of problems is soon to follow. At least that's been my experience, just about every single time I get what I call "regular people sick." This includes things like colds, the flu, sinus infections, and my recent nemesis, the stomach virus. A stomach virus that showed up just in time to help my dysautonomia make me very aware of it for Dysautonomia Awareness Month, and the two year anniversary of a medical procedure that was supposed to be simple and routine, but turned out to be anything but routine and simple.

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