being sick | managing your anxiety



When I first started "getting sick", I freaked the fuck out all of the time. There wasn't a google article that I did not press on when I searched my symptoms.

Back pain and stomach swelling

Can I be allergic to everything out of nowhere

Hives to something I eat every single day

What’s a normal resting heart rate

Migraines and cold feet

My right shoulder hurts so much that I can't sleep

Jaw pain and my urine smells like a pet store

Tests after lab work after skin biopsy after a new specialist every week. It didn't (and still hasn't) end.

"I don't know what's going on."

"It's probably all in your head."

"You should be on birth control."

"Try losing some weight."

"I don't think it's as bad as you make it seem."

My body was literally telling me something was wrong and nobody had answers. These professionals I paid my $6,000 deductible to (each year) could not tell me what was going on, for years.

I heard it all, I tried it all, nothing and nobody was helping.

But I did manage to compile a nice list of things that I learned that got me through that initial starting point of becoming chronically ill. Personally, crying wasn't an option after awhile as it causes allergic reactions so I had to get creative.



Take control of what you can.

You feel as if you've lost control over your body while these symptoms just seem to pile up and won't stop. That loss of control over your own fucking body is mind altering and scary and not fair. So take control of what you can.

Make lists. I started using Notion for everything. My whole life is written down. Every symptom, every doctor, every fax number, every visit note, etc. It's all collected and organized. It makes me feel like I have some type of order in my life.

Make those appointments and get those tests done. Nobody can say that you didn't try something if you're doing it all. Just don’t overwhelm yourself, okay?

I limited my diet to my "safe" foods because then I could control some of the reactions.

Buying clothes that were comfier and less itchy, made me feel better on a day to day basis. My weight still fluctuates to this day and I had to make sure I had work clothes that suited every part of my life.

And don't forget that you have control over how you're treated. People are shit and doctors are too. Be your own advocate & I'll write a post on how to do so, but it's so important that you do that for yourself.


Grieve.

Something is happening in your body and just because nobody knows what's going on, or you have a diagnosis, doesn't mean that you can't grieve of what once was.

Getting sick made me realize that the life I thought I was going to have was nowhere in the cards for me anymore. Getting sick also changed so many relationships in my life. I lost my partner. I lost friends. Family members didn't "believe" me. I had to say goodbye to those people and my "dreams".

The thing is, the chronic illness community is so beyond supportive. Of course there's going to be people that compare symptoms, just stay away from them. I've met the best people of my life because we're all sick.

And now I have new "dreams" for my future. I still get sad when I think of everything that I wanted before, but it's a new path, not a bad one.


Focus on the now.

The symptoms you had three hours ago or the blood work you had done yesterday shouldn't be what you're focusing on right now. Have all of that written down, but focus on right now. What is happening right this second and let's think of how we can take care of that.

Grab that blanket that you washed in hypoallergenic detergent, take that bubble bath, put on Golden Girls, whatever that you need to decompress and focus on what is happening right at that moment.


Find your community.

There's so many instagram pages, facebook groups, sub-reddits, etc for literally every single thing under the sun. You are not alone. And always remember that you can come to me, too. - I'm @wolfandindie on literally every single site.


Validate yourself. Remember, what you’re feeling, thinking and going through is real.



I believe you.

I believe in you.

I'm proud of you.