Living with a chronic illness, where each day is a battle, can wear on a person. Those with chronic illnesses have to manage a lot! Finding relief from symptoms while facing a chronic illness includes far more than just a little extra rest.
For many people I’ve met in the chronic illness community, their treatment protocols have included dietary changes, an extensive list of supplements and prescription medicines, detox methods, rest, exercise, prayer, meditation, use of essential oils, and more. There’s often a mix of traditional and herbal treatment. Because each person’s body is different, the treatment that works for them will be individualized, even if they have similar conditions. It’s a matter of trial and error until they can find the right system.
I’m at the place in my treatment of Lyme, co-infections, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, etc. where I am worn down and need serious rest in addition to my current treatment protocol. I’ve been burnt out and depressed, feeling like I’m constantly on the verge of drowning. Stress and feelings of unmet expectations take me into a dark place where I feel like I can’t go on.
Because I’ve felt so terrible over the past several weeks, I’ve been reflecting on what I actually need in order to get better. What I’ve learned through personal reflection and prayer is that the most crucial thing my body needs right now is for me to be kind and give myself grace.
Hello sweet girl:
I am so sorry you’re hurting! I’ve been in your place hundreds of times in my own battle with chronic illness. Even last night, I was there again.
The physical, mental, and emotional burdens that come with the territory of chronic illnesses can be paralyzing, leaving us uncertain of how to function “normally.” There’s grief that’s hard to explain to those who haven’t been in your shoes.
In all of the pain and hardship, it might seem like giving up is the answer.
The idea of letting go of your life, or of moving away and starting over, may sound appealing.
If you’re anything like me, you wish you could just run away from your problems instead of facing them head-on.
My natural tendency as a “go-getter” is to strive – to see a problem and tackle it. But, I’m to the point where I’ve grown weary. Following a treatment protocol and not seeing results can be discouraging. Living in a state of continual ups and downs is draining.
You know what I want more than anything?
You know what I really want?
What my soul craves. What my heart longs for. What I can’t be content without.
It’s something that’s been there.
Actually, someone who’s been there.
Someone who’s been there by my side all along. Even when I was rebellious. Even when I sought my own pleasure instead of the true satisfaction that can only be found in one place.
He was there.
But somehow, even knowing the truth, my tendency is to slip away. I start to wander and almost lose myself as I seek adventure before the source of adventure.
I have sought blessings instead of the one who calls us blessed.
You have Lyme Disease, huh?
I’m so sorry!
Lyme Disease is rough, and facing it can often leave us questioning everything we thought we knew about health and ourselves. Some days we may have moments where we feel relatively “normal” before we’re spun into a place of pain, neurological symptoms, and grief.
For me, personally, most days are pretty rough. Since my diagnosis, I have seen some better days, but they are always followed deep valleys. Treatment may be working, but when you add in Herxheimer (die-off) reactions and flares, healing doesn’t seem to come as quickly as I would have hoped.
Each day is a battle of both the body and the mind. In order to help myself heal effectively, I have to remember a few things. If you’re also fighting Lyme Disease and co-infections, these simple reminders may make a difference for your outlook.
Back in November there was a workshop for Hope*Writers. In the summer when I got the information about the workshop, I was in such a poor health and financial situation that I knew it wasn’t going to be feasible to go this time around.
Knowing I wouldn’t be able to meet my writer friends in real life was a hard pill to swallow, but when I made the decision to instead purchase the online pass to watch the conference recordings I knew it was the right choice.
Fast forward a few months to the weekend of the conference. As I laid in bed in pain on the days my writer friends were meeting each other and delving into teaching that would spur them on in their callings, I was jealous.
I was frustrated and angry that a party was going on and I was stuck at home watching it from afar in a highlight reel on social media. It was another situation where I was invited, but I couldn’t go. This seems to be a common occurrence in my chronically ill life. If you have a chronic illness, you can probably relate!
As I scrolled through Instagram and Facebook on the days of the Hope*Writers Workshop, I grew discontent with my current life situation. I was tired of being sick. I didn’t want to miss out on fun and on learning the skills I needed to continue in my calling to write. Sure, I would eventually watch the conference recordings, but it wouldn’t be the same as being there in person. There’s energy and excitement that comes from connecting in person that can’t be replicated through online avenues.