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Living with an Invisible Chronic Illness


Is Explaining to Friends Challenging?


Living with invisible illness

Chronic Illness: Unpredictable, Invisible, Long-lasting

OK we have a little homework for you. Yes I did say homework. Come on now please don't groan.
I did some surfing recently. No not at the beach.... Silly what were you thinking of.
Anyway I found this website Invisible Illness Week and they have a challage for us. It's called "Share About Your Life with Illness With Our “30 Things…”
Yep your right this is your homework for the week.

This is a great way to blog about your invisible illness too. We may say, “no one understands!” but have we really given them the chance to? Probably not if your like me you tend to keep that stuff to yourself as you don't want to sound like a whinger.

Will you please fill this out, post it on your blog or on Facebook, etc. and then let your friends and family know.

You may even be surprised to find out who you know who is living silently with his or her own invisible illness.

Please send your homework to our facebook and forum/chat site which you can access at our Home Page

30 Things About My Invisible Illness You May Not Know

1. The illness I live with is:
2. I was diagnosed with it in the year:
3. But I had symptoms since:
4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is:
5. Most people assume:
6. The hardest part about mornings are:
7. My favorite medical TV show is:
8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is:
9. The hardest part about nights are:
10. Each day I take __ pills & vitamins. (No comments, please)
11. Regarding alternative treatments I:
12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose:
13. Regarding working and career:
14. People would be surprised to know:
15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been:
16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was:
17. The commercials about my illness:
18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is:
19. It was really hard to have to give up:
20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is:
21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would:
22. My illness has taught me:
23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is:
24. But I love it when people:
25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is:
26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them:
27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is:
28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was:
29. I’m involved with
Invisible Illness Week because:
30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel:

Be sure to sign up and let us know at our Forum Chat site

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“Be a light. Be your own light of strength.
Tell your stories, and remember to love the ones around you.
Love this life and hold tightly to each other.
Always remember me, and always... be a light.”


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Be Thankful

Life is a Journey


by Mary Hastings

written May 2003

While from the outside I may seem normal,

It’s the part that you can’t see,

The constant pain and struggles within,

Are ever so apparent to me.


Although I may wear a smile,

Often times it's covering the tears,

Yet not tears because of sadness,

As it often may appear.


Don’t be too quick to judge though,

Because there is so much more than is known,

What may seem to look like one thing,

Just might turn to prove so wrong.


I may sometimes seem unfriendly,

Or too centered around self,

Because sometimes standing takes all I’ve got,

And there is just no energy left.


Sometimes my words may sound awkward,

My communication may not always convey,

My true inner thoughts and feelings,

Aren’t always expressed by what I say.


You may think that I’m not really listening,

Sometimes my face or speech may not show,

But I do hear every word you say,

I really want you to know.


The information doesn’t always process,

As quickly and as clear,

And sometimes it takes me longer,

To interpret what I hear.


I possibly miss many opportunities,

To offer needed love or support,

Because sometimes it just takes to long,

For my thoughts and words to sort.


So if my actions seem inappropriate,

In the things I say or do,

I hope that you can understand,

That it is not because of you.


There are times I get discouraged,

When forced to accept my inability--

It’s hard to admit my limitations,

And it leaves me feeling so guilty.


Yet every moment is a reminder

As I look all around,

The effort it takes just to get through the day,

Just picking my feet up off the ground.


I am not looking to find pity,

I am just attempting to explain,

That the person that you may often see,

And the real me aren’t exactly the same.


You may not see the peace and joy,

When you look upon my face,

But I know that each day I live,

Is because of God’s amazing grace.


It is hard to always be cheerful,

When the pain is so very real,

And not everyone can comprehend,

The extend of how I feel.


I don’t see it as all bad though,

Although I’d much rather it not be so,

But I know that if I must endure,

God will strengthen me as I go.


It may seem as if I take no pride

In the way that I look or dress,

However, there might be much more going on,

Inside of the big mess.


My home may not be nice and neat,

My bed not always made,

The laundry may not all be done,

And often it makes me ashamed.


But I must only do what I am able,

Each day I have to choose,

What is most important right then,

And the tasks I am able to lose.


All the plans and dreams I once held,

Now don’t seem quite so clear,

Yet I feel a peace within,

As my Lord keeps drawing me near.


To have a chronic illness,

Or a disability that one must bear,

Somehow puts life into perspective,

And helps to make us more aware.


I realize now that each day I live,

Is a gift from God above,

It is hard not to lean on Him,

Or to look to His great love.


I now can fully understand,

On my own, there is nothing I can do,

It is only be faith and prayer,

That I can make it through.


It may seem an exaggeration,

No one can always feel so bad,

But only those who have walked in these shoes,

Can appreciate the battles that I have had.


I see so many people less fortunate than me,

Don’t have to look very far,

There are so many suffering all around,

It doesn’t matter who you are.


Circumstances and illnesses can hit unexpectedly,

And you can never really be prepared,

It may be difficult to understand,

Leaving you vulnerable and feeling scared.


I must constantly guard my thoughts and mind,

As Satan always tries to bring me down,

He wants me to feel hopeless and unworthy,

And turn my smile into a frown.


It is hard not to get depressed,

When I see the burden my family must bare,

The fact I cannot always meet their needs,

No one could be more aware.


There are times I feel like giving up,

When I look too far ahead,

But I know if my loved ones were given the choice,

They would just choose to have me here instead.


There are so many ups and downs,

New challenges each day,

I must strive to keep my eyes on God,

So that I be not led astray.


It would be so difficult to cope,

Without God, my hope would all be gone,

Because through submitting to Him in prayer,

Is when my weaknesses are made strong.


So when you see the way I look,

When my insecurities are in view,

Base who I am on what’s inside,

Not by the things that I can do.


The greatest lesson that I have ever learned,

Is the reason that I am here on earth,

Is not to live for self and gain,

For in these things are not my worth.


God has a purpose for my life,

Although the details I may not see,

He still has it under control,

And is continually watching over me.


Maybe one day I will be well,

And my health He will restore,

But if that is not in God’s will,

I will still praise Him ever more.


If this suffering can bring honor to Him,

I will gladly accept the call,

Because of His great love for me,

He suffered and gave His all.


I have to believe that what I am going through now,

Will somehow work together for good,

And one day it will be revealed,

And all things will be understood.


While I still worry about what you think,

More the example that I may show,

I am learning so much more each day,

And this has really helped me to grow.