By Clarissa Shepherd
Most of us are all too familiar with this concept. Even if we've been sick for years, as I have, it doesn't stop us from wanting to do the things we used to do, in the way we used to do them. The desire is still with us.
We live with an active mind which still thinks of all the places we'd like to go and what we'd like to do. Then along with this, we'd like to be able to make the decision to clean our home, do some redecorating, etc. – just because we want to do so. Such things used to be so simple for us.
We hear of family and friends taking trips, going out to eat, to a movie, etc. and we feel left behind. It's a very difficult and isolating place to be. Our body becomes the decision maker for what we are now able to do.
In addition to missing out, we face dealing with the people around us, who see us and think that we look fine. Looking fine and being fine are two totally different things. We certainly don't enjoy the fact that we can't be social or have an active life.
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We don't want pity or sympathy but understanding and compassion. Some people don't seem to know the difference between these two states of being.
We become creative in finding new, less energy-requiring things to entertain us. Drawing, coloring, doing puzzles. etc. – while challenging for us – can become a nice hobby to brighten our day.
Having our mind wander to distant places where our body will not take us is a huge source of sorrow for those of us living with a chronic, debilitating illness. Finding a happy medium between body and mind becomes a huge challenge. Living as we do creates anxiety, fear, lack of confidence and more.
Know you are wonderful, cherished, cared for human beings traveling a very slippery and overwhelming path. Hold to this truth of who you truly are – warrior of a unique kind, going out to battle an unseen monster each and every day. A survivor heart, mind, body, and spirit.
One of my own quotes is, "Fear does not mean you're without courage, for courage is the act of moving forward through your fear."
Clarissa Shepherd is founder of the uplifting Fellow Travelers: Support and Chat (ME/CFS/FM) online Facebook support group and author of the book of natural healing: Find Your Way: A Guide to Healing While Living With Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome and Fibromyalgia