Having chronic illnesses is like being a tightrope walker, juggling twenty different balls, with one arm tied behind your back and a blind fold over your eyes.
You are forever fighting against losing every aspect of your life which is important to you, while at the same time finding the delicate balance of where to step so as to not over do it and make yourself more unwell. Sometimes I fear that I have dropped too many things – I do not work, I can not study, I do not exercise, I barely attend social functions, I often can not do my hobbies, I have moved back in with my parents; so much of what makes me me is currently not part of my life. Sometimes I feel so shaken and distraught by the thought that I am getting older and I am missing out a crucial part of my life. I know that I have fought; every day I work towards better health. I know that I do not make excuses, I have definite goals, and I am determined to reach them. The body’s weaknesses are hard to beat though, and I am on a long, slow road. Finding that happy medium, where you do not give up, where you battle against the odds to reach your goals, and where you do not push too far that you create damage; that is the real challenge of living with chronic illness.
Reassessing what you want from your life is often part of the answer. Making realistic goals will get you further. I have posters on my wall with my goals written on them. These goals are not the same as the ones I had 2, 5, or 10 years ago. Some are smaller versions of them. Some are completely new ones, born out of the rediscovery of myself through the shake up that illness is to life. Some seem huge to me now, but I know that if I can keep fighting, I can keep working towards them.
While you work towards these goals, find something that you find rewarding that is within your capabilities. Try so hard to not be the illness. You are you, and there are so many things that make you you, and only you can fight to keep them within. Every little step in the right direction, as small as it is, takes you a step closer to good health, and a step closer to getting back the life you want and deserve.
I am thankful for what my body still allows me to do, but there is so much that I miss out on and I want to do everything in my power to do all that I want to do with my life. Look deep into yourself and find what it is you want to fight for, and claw back to that point with every fibre of your being. We can do it.