I take part in a great weekly chat on Twitter (@writerkimwalsh) every week called #SpoonieChat. This week a question was asked by a participant. "Do you write about your illness anywhere else and if so why?" Of course I answered in that little allotted window that I do, to hopefully share my blessings and raise awareness. I wanted to expand here though.
I am sure to some on my fb I probably sound whiny or like a complainer. I honestly am one of the most positive people ever. I have to be. After my diagnosis I joined groups, followed pages, collected links. One thing was clear. Almost every person facing invisible debilitating illness feels alone, unheard, and unable to share their thoughts and feelings.
For years I'd been sick. Over a decade before diagnosis. And I rarely shared how I felt. We had family live with us who were surprised by how awful I tended to feel. I learned to hide it from a dad who brushed me off and a brother who laughed at me. To them I was an oversensitive manipulative drama queen.
Once I saw how similar others felt I knew I had to help that. I am lucky in that the man I married, my children, my inlaws, and my Mom are very loving, understanding, and compassionate. Once I was diagnosed they researched and rallied behind me. So I vowed to be brutally honest about how I felt. To show that 1: those feelings are normal, pain is shared 2: no one is alone 3: you can still be happy despite an illness and 4: to help others see the life we lead is still full, still.
This is a battle we are not alone in. And the more we share with the world the more we realize that as well as teach others understanding.