Prompt: 5 Challenges. 5 Small Victories. Make a list of the 5 most difficult parts of your health focus. Make another top 5 list for the little, good things (small victories) that keep you going.
Five Challenges of Being Chronically Ill
- I can’t be there physically for my daughters like I want to be. Even though we’ve been to counseling as a family and individually, I still get twinges of guilt when I’m unable to attend a school function, or take care of my daughter when she’s sick.
- Because of the multiple chronic illnesses and the side effects of the medications that I take, I’m unable to work. Before the diagnosis of Myasthenia Gravis, I had one full time job and two part time jobs. I love working! It was part of how I defined myself.
- Not knowing if a simple cold will land me in the hospital. I fear sickness and can go overboard with the slightest inkling that I might have a virus or cold. My doctors would say otherwise. They would tell you that I’m noncompliant because I don’t call or make an appointment right away.
- It’s awful having to take a lot of prescribed pills every day. I’m not really sure why this bothers me so much, but sometimes I get to the point where I purposely forget to take a bunch.
- I miss a lot of things I could do before I got sick. Most of them are physical, like dancing (didn’t matter what I looked like dancing, I’d dance for hours), running, skipping, walking for a long time (indoors and outdoors), sitting in the sun (even with sunscreen on, that’s a no-no), going to the beach for the day (I can last a few hours sometimes if there’s shade and I can get in the water), and just picking up and going out. It’s harder for me to retain things that I learn. I’m scattered and forgetful.
Five Victories of Being Chronically Ill
- My empathy has grown a great deal, even for strangers who are suffering or going through a difficult time. Having chronic pain, going through a difficult surgery and being sick so much has opened my heart to others.
- I’ve learned the importance of listening and not giving advice. When others do that for me, it’s one of the best gifts I can get.
- Forgiveness is easier. I don’t hold grudges like I used to. Life is too short. It’s easier to be on good terms with someone than to feel hatred towards them. I’d rather use my energy for positive things
- I take better care of my health by eating healthy foods, by moving around as much as I can (my exercise is stretching and walking around the house), and by using relaxation and deep breathing. I want to live as long as I can and not get any other illnesses that can be prevented.
- Saying I love you is simple and something I do every day. I want to be sure that my family and friends know how much they mean to me. I cherish them.