Hey friends…you know how last week on the Facebook fan page for my blog, I asked you a question? I asked you to tell me what kind of “invisible disease” you had. Many times, we feel so alone with these diseases, because they are in fact, not visible to people looking in at our lives. But this statistic came from the link I posted: 96% of people with chronic medical conditions live with an illness that is invisible.
I don’t really think we are alone. So let’s say you didn’t get your disability and you have 5, maybe 6 illnesses on that list. Guess what? It happens. I decided it meant something different. I decided it meant that I was supposed to find a flexible job working from home and helping others. Don’t be discouraged. You have a few options. You can continue the fight without a lawyer. I have been told that’s why I never got anywhere. You can get a lawyer. Or you can move on. Moving on is not giving up. I just want to give you permission in case you needed to hear that. I know all the excuses in your head. I know all the what ifs. But do not stay in that place of despair. Make a plan. Work on it. Move on.
So now I am in yoga teacher training, and it’s hard. Very, very hard emotionally and physically. I doubt my path at times. I do. But as my friend said yesterday, okay really paraphrasing, if we didn’t have emotions or feelings we’d be like Data from Star Trek. He was an android who was unable to feel emotion or understand certain human responses. We don’t want to live like that. So acknowledge the feelings you are having, and work the plan. Whatever the plan is. If you don’t have plan, write something down. Just a few things. It can be as simple as get out of bed, and get dressed. Get to the store today. Fibro friends, this is an important plan. You know this. Get out of your pajamas…says the blogger still in pajamas. But you know what I’m talking about!!! You do.
Next on your list, make a new friend. Okay, this one is hard. Why is this hard? It is hard for people who feel alone, because opening ourselves up and getting vulnerable with new people is like going to a new doctor for us. We hate having to start at the beginning and tell our story. I know this. You know this. Stop ignoring this one. So here’s how you can go about doing this. Re-evaluate who is in your life right now. Who checks in on you…who checked out on you. Those people who checked out of your life during your hardest times, they have left you space for new people. I know it sucks, believe me I do. But it’s time to be honest. Those people didn’t understand anyway.
So start a new practice. Get your list out. What did you like to do before all the bumps? For me, I already liked yoga, so I looked into restorative, which was low-key. I researched other types of exercises for fibromyalgia, and decided I didn’t feel like going to water aerobics, but if you like that, put that down. if you liked gardening put it down. Don’t think about the pain, I know you automatically went to “I can’t get down there and bend.” Stop. So here’s a neat idea, look up community free classes or workshops in your area. You can also container garden and not have to bend. See how I did that? Put it at eye level. Flower arranging? Do it. Whatever it is that old you did, write it down.
So guess what’s going to happen during this process of thinking about other things that you now have room for in your life…you are going to make new friends. You are going to feel better, and you are going to feel less alone. Anytime you have a negative thought, push it away and back to the things you are doing that are positive. That are a step in the right direction. So when you get that letter in the mail from social security…don’t be afraid to open it. Make a plan.