Health and Disability

The positives of my chronic illness

Hiya everyone, I missed my post last week as I was away in Butlins for the weekend with my family and no internet! Raaahhh!

This week I’ve been reading other blogs and I saw one with this title and wanted to do my own. I haven’t been feeling very positive lately and I’ve been getting really upset and annoyed by my health, my limitations and it’s ongoing deterioration so I have given my head a shake and I’m writing this post to remind myself of the positives and hopefully help some of you to see your own positives when living with a chronic health condition.

1 – I am more confident

I know that I can handle anything that life throws at me. I have to keep readjusting my life to adapt to my ever changing condition. I also know how to stand up for myself now and when to do it. Previously I would just move on from any negative people or environments, keep my opinions to myself and only make a fuss when it affected people who are important to me, but now I am more confident in speaking up for myself and asking for what I need.

2 – I am able to ask for help when I need it

I’ve never been able to ask for help. I’m ridiculously independent and always do things for myself, I’ve bought my own cars, worked 2 jobs at university, moved house myself, done DIY and lived alone for the past 6 years. When I had to move back in with my parents I was devestated, I felt like I was failing at being an adult and whenever I ask for help with something I feel like a failure. It’s something I’ve been working on and I’m getting much better. I can ask people to pick me up, to help with little jobs around the house and I don’t feel utterly useless when I do! It’s a huge achievement for me and everyone needs help sometimes!

3 – I’m able to open up and be more honest with my friends and family

Telling people more details about my health and how I am managing has helped me to have more honest and open relationships with them. I used to keep things from the people close to me, I’d try to put on a brave face, put on a smile and just carry on. I’d manage, make adjustments so I could carry on with everything and keep people in the dark about how bad I was feeling. Now I answer the question “how are you?” With the truth. I think that this helps my relationships, I’m a great believer in honesty and I feel closer to the important people in my life now which is hugely important to me.

4 – I’ve had to think about my future

With my condition deteriorating I’ve had to think carefully about my future. I’ve had to make adjustments to my work which I wasn’t happy about, but have ultimately led me to being brave and going self employed which I have wanted to do for years, but have never had the courage, the correct idea or the support to do it. I can’t manage in a traditional job anymore so I’ve had to make adjustments. To plan for my long term future and try to find something that will work if my health gets worse, to reasses my vision of my life and figure out how to make it better! I would have just carried on in another corporate job making money for big companies and not feeling satisfied with my career without my health condition. For that I am very thankful!

5 – I’ve made lots of new friends and seen the amazing in people

My new friends have come from my volunteering group for my clinic, people at work with health conditions who I’ve got closer to as we have lots in common. There are also friends that I’ve met through support groups online and  people from my new business. The others with chronic health conditions that I have met have shown me how amazing the human spirit is, how eager to help and support others they are even with their own struggles and challenges. The people in my new business have shown me that work can be fun, exciting, challenging and that people can be supportive without an agenda. My friends and family have been brilliant! I’ve been supported, had food brought over, been taken to appointments and understood when I had to cancel or miss things when I haven’t been well enough. Lots of people with chronic health conditions talk about loosing friends and struggling with family members, not being understood and feeling lonely. My experience has been the complete opposite and I am very thankful for that.

There are probably a lot more, but this is enough for now. I’m not happy that I’ve got an incurable health condition, I’m not thrilled that my mobility is deteriorating or that I’m in pain and exhausted all the time. I’m not excited that I have to change and adapt my life, goals and dreams because of it, but I am happy about the life that I have. I like being able to have a business that I can do around my health. I like being able to help and support other people in similar situations to me and I feel blessed for the people that I have in my life.

Vic xx

3 thoughts on “The positives of my chronic illness

  1. I really needed to read this today. I’m having a difficult time at the moment and having an operation next week. I feel totally consumed by my limitations right now. I think I should write myself a list and take it with me when I go into hospital. It might give me the strength to keep going. I’ve been so worried that I’ve just written my will, just in case. I’m more responsible now, that’s a positive!
    I think that this is a post that all spoonies should right periodically. Can you imagine the wide range of answers? I think it would be really interesting.
    Thank you for posting. Cath xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s such a good point! I’m going to do it again next time I’m in a huff with my health ☺️
      Hope you’ve written your list and feeling more positive. Good luck with the op and being responsible is a fab positive! I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed for you xxx

      Liked by 1 person

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