I seem to baffle some people, because I’m upbeat despite my situation; a situation that they deem to be the absolute pits.
Some don’t know what to do with me because of my attitude. I don’t fit with their preconceived idea that people with chronic illness just need to be more positive; that a change in attitude is all that stands between people and good health.
I’m already positive and upbeat and happy.
So the spiel that they have prepared, always ready incase they meet someone who they deem as in need of their unsolicited advice and unwanted ‘wisdom’, goes to waste.
Confusion then builds – You can be sick and happy?! But…that happiness hasn’t cure her?! Who knew! But then they assume that there must be something wrong with me to be happy with this.
What’s most mystifying to outsiders though, seems to be that I’m not here to find something to ‘fix’ my illhealth. I’m now quite firm on my boundaries around unsolicited advice or the well-meaning “Have you tried…” suggestions.
Yes I have gone refined sugar free, dairy free, and gluten free. I’ve taken hundreds of pounds worth of supplements. I’ve done yoga programmes aimed at people with my particular illness. And you know what? Rest is still the only thing that’s ever made any noteworthy, positive difference to my health.
Some assume that because I’m not looking for input from them about how to make progress or recover, that I don’t want to get better. Strangers on the internet and their audacious messages tell me it’s because of X Y and Z that I haven’t recovered. They don’t deserve more than a couple of short sentences of my attention.
I’m now ten years in to a life with a chronic illness. I have found that it’s best for me to make my peace with things as they are, as best I can on any given day. That’s what is best for me.
I am, despite what others might think, living a life I didn’t dare dream of. Between 2010-2014 it seemed farcical that I would ever leave the care of my wonderful parents, use my upstairs bedroom again regularly, or get to make a start on my guinea pig girl gang.
It’s nowhere near the life I had for 21 active and wonderful years. But I actually wouldn’t change it.
(Please know that this is my take on my own life with my own set of circumstances and symptoms. It will vary dramatically from others. None is right or wrong. No person can ever really comment on whether or not another person should be happy or sad about a certain situation. Of course it all comes and goes as any feeling or emotion tends to do. But for the most part I am so happy with my lot.)
2 thoughts on “How baffling that I’m happy with my lot”
Let’s carry on baffling those who cannot comprehend happiness with a chronic illness and ignoring those who think acceptance make us weaker. Thank you for another very articulate post Anna.
I often read your work. I’m happy that you are happy. So many people aren’t (inc the healthy ones). I’m 28 years into this M E thing and am nearly worn out with it all but I realised reading this entry that mostly I’m content too.
Kind regards, Samantha. PS Bob is sadly no longer with us. Current hamster is Pebbles. I’ve had g pigs in the past I and they are great characters