Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Chronic Illness Isn't For Sissies

I remember the word as a child, sissy. My brothers and I would use this word quite often as we dared each other to do all the things we knew we shouldn't do. Believe me, when one of us was dared to do somehting you were going to do what ever you were dared to do in order to risk the label sissy because if you didn't you knew you were going to be called a sissy for a few days at least.

As I awake on my seventh day in hell, fatigued, hurting joints, weak, and......the list could go on but I'll stop. I think of being a sissy while living with chronic illness. Many days I think I am a sissy and I call myself it when I can't do even one thing I really wanted to do on a certain day.  The other day I was thinking about being a  sissy? Really? Am I a sissy? When I really thought about it I thought to myself I don't think I am a sissy at all. It takes a very strong, courageous person to get out of bed each morning to only face another day of illness.I have to talk to myself like this or else there would be no reason to get up. So up I got and here I am again today, up!

So sissy? NOT! I had to wipe that word out of my head but not before I thought of a few of my fellow chronic illness sufferers. I think of the the young mother on a vent who still manages to make jewelry and raise a son along with many other activities, I don't know how she does it. I think of my friend who with the slightest brush up against the wall breaks a bone almost weekly. I think of my friend who still forces herself to go shopping and gets there only to get a few things and is unable to even walk but still goes none the less. I think of a man who has one medical problem after another but still encourages me everyday with his spiritual posts. I think of my friend who wrote so many books on having courage and pushes on as she has already had seven joints replaced in her few short years but still encourages others and also serves as a judge in Lansing Michigan. I think of all my friends who are able to work. Who push through all the pain, weakness and suffering by going to work everyday and more than likely never letting anyone know how they are really feeling. I think of my friend with RA who posts encouraging healthy articles weekly to encourage us to take better care of ourselves. I think of the young mother who can no longer work in the medical field but is still here to give her expertise advice and help me and others. I could go on forever but I think you get the picture.

So you see, this chronic illness isn't for sissies. It is for heroes. For ordinary people who at times might think their lives don't matter all that much anymore,when in reality they do. Some of the strongest people I know. People despite their set backs and limitations are still stronger than some of the healthiest people I know. People who still get out of bed despite it all. People who don't complain much because this is their life now and they are making the best of what they have been given. People who inspire me to go on when I am in a flare and really don't care about much because I just don't have the energy to care as my body uses the energy to just keep me going.

You know who  you are! I thank each and everyone of you for not being a sissy because you give me strength on the days that I am one.

God Bless each and everyone of you!


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