My Bitchy Bendy Life

Alison Tedford
Written by Alison Tedford

They say laughter is the best medicine. That’s a good thing because for people like me there’s literally nothing else available. 

I have something called joint hyper mobility syndrome, or JHS. Some people call it EDS type 3 or it may actually be EDS classic with hypermobility. No matter which it actually is, it’s basically alphabet soup that makes your joints say “It’s five o’clock somewhere” way too damn early in the day. 

My shitty joints mean my body is like a terribly assembled flat pack coffee table, always in jeopardy of random disassembly. My joints partially dislocate all the time. The stuff normal coffee tables can hold makes me fall over in a heap and some days I really wish I had something I could rest a beverage on without making a mess. 

You see, it comes with a tremor which is great if you have career aspirations of becoming James Bond’s bartender (*shaken not stirred*) but less great if you have hobbies like eating soup, painting your own fingernails, wearing contact lenses, plucking your own eyebrows or doing up buttons. Forget bringing sexy back, I’m bringing VELCRO back. My greatest fear is that I will flip someone off and my middle finger will hyperextend and get stuck like that.

But as I said, there isn’t a ton they can do. Like Lady Gaga says, baby I was born this way. 

Advice I’ve received to manage my condition has included things like (and I paraphrase) “try to be less fat, don’t work so hard, sleep more, drink lots of water.” That’s super annoying because I figured when they knew what was wrong with me they could fix it. Isn’t that how life is supposed to work? Like imagine you are driving your car and it starts making weird noises.

You bring it to the shop and you figure they will diagnose and fix the damn thing. Instead you get there and they are like, “The problem is you are driving a Pinto. We could try to fix it, but it will still be a Pinto. You can’t even trade that shit in. Good luck.”

I see all this inspiration porn about people who rise above their conditions and accomplish amazing things and I think “I just wanna wash my hands without hearing things go crunch.” Putting on a bra sounds like a bowl of rice crispies mixed with pop rocks (is there anything sexier than the sound of breakfast cereal?) The symphony of my body is mostly percussion. I am a one woman band. 

On the plus side, if anyone says I’m “not flexible enough” – I’ve got a doctor’s note that says otherwise and two middle fingers pointed skyward that might just get stuck that way.

About the author

Alison Tedford

Alison Tedford

Alison Tedford is a hot mess mom, daily writer of funny and serious shit, cookie arsonist and hogger of the bed. She's Canadian, but not sorry at all.

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2 Comments

  • So I was cruising my wordpress feed and hadn’t checked in here in a long time but I wanted to drop a note and say you are not alone! EDS-3 was a helluva diagnosis to get, it sucks to have it but I’ve gained so much! Now I have “family” all over the internet who knows exactly what I’m going thru. The funny memes get me thru it and my EDS Reddit family! Cheers!