Monday, 17 April 2017

Easter Weekend Reflection -The Importance of Remembering You're Ill

This weekend my boyfriend has been away and wholeheartly, I have enjoyed having the flat and time to myself. Despite my numerous chronic conditions (which I am currently trying to gain a viable treatment method for), meaning I am usually at home majority of the day by myself, with the odd doctors/hospital appointment or the inevitable A&E trips it's not quite the same.

Suffering with a chronic illness can make you feel quite isolated and lonely, and not just because you are home alone away from work and daily social interactions. Truthfully, it has had a mental impact on myself, and I struggle to believe anyone who is diagnosed with a chronic or terminal illness would not also feel a range of emotions. It can be difficult to talk to someone who understands quite what you are going through, for me personally, I rarely speak about my illness in a social situation, as these are rare and few between of which of I put pressure on myself to not look or come across as "sick".

This weekend hasn't been quite like that though.. Everyone is grateful for their own space once in a while. More so, this weekend I have felt I can just be "me" -Claire that is struggling with an array of different chronic conditions trying to make sense of it all, and how my world has totally changed from this time last year.  I haven't felt the pressure from others or rather, more often is the case - myself. I have generally just be true to myself, without the judgement of anyone else or needing to do something for someone else, or most crucially having something done within a certain time frame for someone else. Carrying out basic necessities such as cleaning the flat, making and preparing food, going out now all take so much longer to prepare and carry out, and while I don't stop myself from doing these, I also know I often push my body into doing too much at times. Therefore this weekend I have had a spring clean, including decluttering my wardrobe, food deliveries, and general refreshment of the flat all within a timely fashion, which can be difficult when someone else is living in the house and trying to skirt around hoovers, dusters, my entire wardrobe contents, etc!! Honestly, I find it difficult not to put on a brave face for everyone, I have my moments of fear, but even to my partner whom I live with I still don't always quite want to sit and suffer, instead I have a habit of keeping myself occupied and busy in order to distract myself, though this doesn't always work.




Some of this weekend I have also reflected about how different things were for me this time last year (blaming Facebook Time-hop!!) I could have never have ever anticipated that in less than two months time my whole world would be flipped upside down. I don't wish to write this blog post to dwell on what my life used to be. There shall always be "if's" and "but's" in life as it is and the key thing is that these cannot be changed by speculating. Though, I have realised that the most important thing to remember if you are going through a difficult time whether that may be because of your health, family, money, or whatever it may be.. Things can and will get better. It is often so easy to get caught up in the spiral of thinking "will it ever get better?" and something I have been known to vex myself with. The truth is, although it may not feel like it right now, things will change before you know it and they will work out.

Everyone experiences things being thrown at them in life which you did not expect and nor be quite prepared for. For many of you, like me it was perhaps being diagnosed with a life long illness, but whatever life throws at you, it can sometimes be really hard to battle through these life situations. I can assure you that you will make it through. It might take a week, a month or even years... (who else is singing the Friends theme tune in their head?!) Everything we go through in life moulds us into the people who make us who we are.

This is one of my favourite songs that has summed up the majority of this past "roller coaster" of a year.  I play this over and it makes me quite emotional,  I have cried listening to this song, I will admit I don't know whether the tears are because of joy or sadness of what my life used to be. There is something so mysterious and haunting about it yet, I can feel Ellie's emotions and resonate with the lyrics.

"It's ok to be afraid, but it will never be the same" 

So, until my partner comes through the door and once more I shall be attached to him like a koala bear at his hip, pestering him for some human interaction that I am so dearly lacking as of late! Right now I shall make the most of the steadily paced decluttering and having "me" time and laying off the pressure from myself!

I hope everyone is having a fabulous Easter, and you too are finding a balance between enjoying yourself and indeed remembering your limits by giving yourself a weekend off from pressurising yourself to do more and more.

"The Hopeful Chronic"


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