In our lives somewhere along the line we either have family or friends or even ourselves or know of someone who has a chronic illness.
I know I have one and I also have a few family and friends that are living with a chronic illness.
Is it easy living with an illness like this? No. It impacts our own lives and our families and even our friends. Treatment for chronic illness can be difficult and the doctors do the best that they can. Then the rest is up to us in maintaining the treatment guidelines given to us by our doctors.
For myself as I have shared about, I have a couple of conditions that affect another condition and there is where things get complicated. Some of us don’t have much of an immune system or none at all and it is easy for us to catch just the common cold which in turn affects another condition and can make us severely sick.
For us who suffer from chronic illness, we watch our health very closely, what we eat, how much sleep we get, stress, exercise, the list goes on.
The good thing when one suffers from an illness like this is having the loving support of family and friends, and last but not least God. I know if I didn’t have God in my life, my family and friends, I honestly don’t know where I would be for I struggle with work related issues, not always being able to drive or even exercise, sometimes I can’t even get out of bed especially when a seizure occurs.
Each chronic illness has its own set of problems and each person handles it differently.
But what I have learned living with mine since January 15, 1993 and how it turned my life upside down is that I have become stronger, have dealt with attendance issues and not being permanently hired for a job anymore, which I understand, even though my skills and references are above reproach.
I have managed to raise my son, Michael since he was born and pretty much on my own for a number of years after his Dad left us in November of 1997. By God’s grace and family, friends and my church…I am here today, still struggling but slowly getting a little better, knowing how to live with it and managing it on a daily basis. It is not as bad as it used to be, though it still will rear its ugly head and this is part of life and will be until the day I go to heaven to meet my maker.
The other side is dealing with insurance companies, I myself lost my insurance so pretty much it is save up little by little until I can see one of my health care providers at least once a year. Dealing with Social Security…I lost the battle on it…even though they recognize my disability, I am considered not disabled enough to qualify for it. They look at the daily picture, which is having multiple seizures daily not looking at the long term. For example this past week I caught the flu bug, it basically caused my seizures to come out again and being sick I wasn’t able to eat as well and my blood sugar levels dropped severely, I was at the point where I could not get out of bed, move my head or body, then add in the hormone issues even with menopause (hysterectomy) I still suffer from some hormone issues once a month.
Basically, I have lost two weeks of not accomplishing much and not being able to drive at least till next week. If I report it to my neurologist, he would put me on a 3 month driving restriction which leaves me having to rely on others to get me too and from and that has been done already when I needed it and very much appreciated it.
So now I can tell when I shouldn’t drive and just base it on my recovery. It is dangerous if I am having tremor spikes, because one of those spikes can go into a full blown gran mal seizure and if I am driving while this occurs the consequences can be quite severe.
Ultimately, if you are blessed enough not to have a chronic illness, then I hope you will stay blessed and I hope by sharing what I experience myself and what others go through who live with chronic illnesses that you will gain an understanding of our lives and how we accomplish even the smallest daily task on a regular basis.
We are people just the same, yes we have an illness or two or more and it can and does make our lives complicated, but we persevere and make it to the next day even when our bodies don’t want to. It is the human will to live and to survive and that my dear friends are strength, love and God.