You know how it feels to be watching a really sad movie, or reading an emotionally charged book, and you just need a break from it…..well, at the moment, I feel the same writing about chronic illness.
In particular, I’m sick of my own sickness story.
I need to push pause, change the channel, read another book.
Not forever, just for a moment.
Chronic Illness Overload
Life is more than chronic illness. I am more than my disease. However, as the years go by I feel more and more defined as the chronic illness blogger/writer, who runs an online support forum for others living with the same reality.
Yes, it’s true. It’s who I am, it’s what I do and what I live with everyday.
It’s only a part of me though and I think I’m even losing sight of the real me, as I am engulfed with my pain and the pain of others.
I’m clearly having a case of “Chronic Illness Overload” and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone.
So I need to solve this if I’m going to be effective in my desire to help others and not lose myself in a chronic illness cavern.
Too Much Of A Bad Thing
We all know the saying “too much of a good thing”.
Well, it’s very possible to also have too much of a bad thing.
No matter the extremes of life, the good and the bad, we need a rest. Periods of amazing happiness or excitement have their used by date. We have to return to a level of normalcy where life is on an even keel. Always looking for the next adventure and injection of excitement is not sustainable or even conducive to healthy well being.
It’s the same with focusing on the hard realities of life like a chronic illness. You have to switch off at some point and try and be normal. Try and remember who you are underneath the layers of symptoms and diagnoses.
If I feel fatigued by my own story, I can’t help but imagine how others must feel reading about it. Even the progression and updates must be causing stress and an overarching sense of needing to change the channel.
I know on my forum, members often feel hurt by the response, or lack of, from friends and family when they share medical news. Let’s consider though, these people do care and are concerned and love you, but they can only take so much too.
It’s entirely feasible they have a case of chronic illness overload and need to push pause, take a break, turn the page, listen to another story.
The Other Me, The Other You
So, chronic illness aside….who are you, who am I?
- I’m a wife who dearly loves her husband;
- I’m passionate about interior decorating and love my home;
- I’m a singer and love music;
- I’m an Aunty, a Nana, a Daughter, a Step-Mum, a Niece, a Cousin who loves her family unconditionally;
- I’m a friend who will always support and love those closest to her;
- I love road trips in the countryside;
- I love garden cafes with gift stores attached;
- I was a Leader in the business world for 30 years and am still passionate about leading and coaching as opportunities present;
- I love change management in particular;
- I love writing, non fiction is my main passion. I’ve studied freelance journalism and non fiction writing;
- I love accounting….I’ve always had a love of numbers and partially completed a Diploma of Accounting for fun! So creating budgets, cash flow projections, managing accounts, is my idea of a good time;
- I love dogs, horses, ducks and geese….all animals really but they are my favourites;
- I’m a Christian who loves God and has a tangible faith;
- I’m far from perfect. I get grumpy, I can shout and rant with the best of them but I never hold a grudge and will say sorry first,within an hour usually. I hate being/staying angry;
- I love murder mystery TV shows, period/historical dramas;
- I love studying history;
- I love flowers….especially roses;
- I love entertaining at home;
- I’m passionate about helping others;
- I’m a clean freak and make no apology for it;
- I love makeup, clothes and making myself look as nice as possible;
- I love holidaying in Australia. I love my country;
- I love sending greeting cards and I save any received;
- I love wrapping presents;
- I love collecting teapots, pretty mugs and plates and clocks;
- I am fascinated with all things medical and was going to be a Nurse. At 18 I was accepted into the WA School of Nursing, but decided to take up a banking position for a year first. The rest as they say is history as I remained in Banking and worked my way up, through the years, to Executive Manager level.
Connections Are Important
So if you are reading this and feeling weighed down with your own case of chronic illness overload, take some time to reconnect with who you really are.
What would your “Who Am I” list look like?
If you are a friend or loved one of someone with chronic illness and are also experiencing a case of chronic illness overload……..It’s ok, we get it!
Perhaps connect with your friend/loved one by letting them know you’re overwhelmed and you’d love to do something, with them/for them, non health related.
“but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
So let’s dump our case of chronic illness overload and realise it’s so important to feel connected, with who we are, aside from our diseases, and with others in our lives who are so important to us.
(Much More than a Chronic Illness)
If you’re looking for genuine support, care, understanding & friendship, you are so welcome to join my closed Facebook support forum, Medical Musings with Friends . It’s a safe place to connect with others living with chronic & complex diseases, who truly understand the daily challenges. A warm welcome awaits.
If you would like to read a little more about my journey, here’s the link to My Story