Accepting My Chronic Illness
I already know what you’re thinking, “This writer is crazy to think anyone can accept their illness!”... And you are right. I mean, how can someone who has an illness that ruins their everyday life - and has taken so much from them - be ok with it?
It isn’t easy to do or think about. But for me, it was something that needed to be done. It began to hit me that the more I sat around sulking over my illness, the more I was letting it win. I mentally, emotionally, and physically was doing more harm than good by constantly being angry over it.
Don’t get me wrong: Bad days still happen, and I let them happen. But, it is how I now look at endometriosis that has changed.
I have gained so many wonderful friends
One of the best things that has happened to me since being diagnosed with endometriosis is the friendships I have made. Some of my absolute best friends are women I have met via social media or support groups. Without my diagnosis, I would have never met them. I have learned that I am not alone, and I don’t have to go through this alone. The love and support I receive from these ladies are a constant reminder why I am so grateful.
I have lost people, too
So where is the positivity in this? Well, the people I have lost during my journey, obviously, were not meant to be in my life. And it made room for those that are meant to be there. Being diagnosed with endometriosis allowed me to open my eyes to see who really cares and loves me: something I was so blinded to before.
I have turned into an advocate
Years ago, you would not catch me standing up for myself. You wouldn’t even catch me sharing my writing or my story. And now, here I am. Thanks to endometriosis, I have gained the courage to advocate for not only myself, but other women and their health issues. Being able to advocate and fight for what you believe in, is so important. No matter what health issue you are dealing with. Endometriosis also led me to start my own blog and when others reach out to me telling me how much I have helped them; I am reminded again why I was given this illness- to help others.
I have learned self-care
Honestly, I was never one good at taking the time to relax. No matter if I was sick, in pain, whatever, I pushed through and kept on doing whatever it was I was doing. Before my diagnosis, I felt guilty taking time to relax or time to myself. Since my diagnosis, I have learned taking breaks, relaxing, and resting are ok. I also even have begun to take it to the next level like face masks, massages, and meditation. Because, we all deserve self-care every now and again.
I have come out of my introvert comfort-zone
Don’t get me wrong, I am still an introvert and always will be. But since my endometriosis diagnosis, I have come out of my comfort zone and have done things you would not catch me doing, ever. I have done live interviews, interviewed others, joined in on podcasts, publicly shared my story (and shared it with no fear), and have just been more involved in the community. Reaching out to others, making phone calls- these are all things I never in my life would do or ever planned on doing. And to be honest, I can thank endometriosis for allowing me all these opportunities.
Sometimes, we are so quick to share the negative of endometriosis. Because well, there are a lot. But there can be so much positive too. If you stop to look for it. I know this isn’t a how to article or research on endometriosis, but I still hope you can take away something from it: You are so much more than your endometriosis. As much pain and agony endometriosis adds to my life, it also adds some good. Even if I am not able to do certain things anymore, I don’t let it stop me. So, thank you, endometriosis. You have opened up new adventures and opportunities that I do not feel would come to me, if I didn’t have you. You were given this illness, because it knew you were strong enough to fight it. So keep fighting.
Do you make any endo preparations when you know you are attending a BBQ, party, or a day at the beach?