Do you wonder if you will EVER get back to where you use to be? All you want is your “life” back?? Are you still drowning in the chronic illness dump? No getting around it, chronic illness stinks. When we put it into perspective, it can take on an interesting view. Arranging the perspective lets us see hope and hope gives us a little gitty-up to get through today.
I wannnnna go back to my life
The bad news is that this is not a realistic thought. Life will never be the same after experiencing chronic illness. We carry the memories and the scars of the experience. Some of the scars are emotional and take even more time to heal than our bodies. Our relationships are taxed in a way that they either disintegrate or deepen.
The good news is when all is said and done, why would we want our old lives? After enduring, surviving and moving through chronic illness we have weeded out the bad relationships. We are left with the good ones!! We have learned more about the human body than we ever cared to and now we have a confidence with that knowledge that benefits our ongoing health.
And what about our new priorities? We have been forced to reprioritize EVERYTHING. The financial destruction of chronic illness for many transforms the way we see money, for the better.
What about how we view ourselves? Usually, after a chronic illness journey, we become more compassionate towards others. We get it, at a more meaningful level than we ever did before.
As we move from the yuck and muck of being chronically ill, we gain a self-confidence that we never had before. We possess more moxie, more grit. After what we have been through, we have earned the badge of Grit Graduate.
We find more forgiveness of ourselves because we were so severely met with our humanity and all of its limitations.
We walk with more humility from the lessons learned through chronic illness. Many of us had years and years, even decades of humbling experiences to get the negativity removed. Our past whining and complaining look quite silly after a chronic illness experience.
So… why would we want to go back to our old lives? I am not convinced there was as much value in our old lives as we think there was. I see more value in the transformation as we have moved through one of the most difficult experiences this planet has to offer.
I wannnna have my health back
Yes, we all remember times when we were more healthy and could supposedly enjoy life better.
Well, this can also be seen from another perspective.
It took our old lives with our “health” that led us down the path of making choices that contributed toward our chronic illness. I know, some illnesses have a genetic factor. Some chronic illness can come from an accident or weather phenomenon. I understand that.
I look at it this way – When we take better care of ourselves, making decent choices for our health, then our bodies are better prepared for the things that go wrong that are out of our control.
Through chronic illness, we learn more about our bodies and their limits. We also learn more about the incredible healing properties that our bodies naturally have when we allow the process to take place. It took our past health circumstances to get us where we are today, both good and bad. We really don’t want to fall back into the past choices that created a false sense of good health.
I wannnnnna look like I used to
Okay, this is my big one. This one grates on me daily. And it is a huge waste of my time and energy. Not only does age change us, so does chronic illness.
In time, it will even itself out. We won’t look as bad as we did when we were so terribly ill. The physical pain we endure really is written all over our face. Have patience, it will change. Our looks will not be like they used to be, they will be better. They will adjust as health comes and it will be the new norm for us.
I have heard it, seen it in others and been on this ride before. It will work itself out. The more we fight it, the longer it takes.
Growing with a new perspective
Part of life is growing up. Part of growing up is learning new perspectives. Make it an adventure instead of only seeing the bad in the chronic illness experience. There is more than plenty of bad to fill your days. Make room for a new perspective to see some of the good.
With a renewed perspective, we get to feel a little confidence in our health journey. We get moments of a perceived skip in our step which makes the day go better. It is difficult enough to walk through the experience, don’t lose sight of hope that keeps you moving forward.
Perspective is just as important to deal with as inflammation, sleep issues, thyroid, and all of the numerous contributing factors that can keep us stuck. As we lighten up our perspective of the situation, our stress lowers which in turn allows our inflammation to lower which gets us down the healing path a bit more.
Maribeth Baxter, MBNC (Certified Mind-Body Nourishment Coach)
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