Thursday, May 16, 2024

But you Don't Look Sick

"But you don't look sick?"

Do you ever wonder what "sick" looks like"? Do you ever want to climb into a hole when you hear that phrase? Or do you want to scream at the top of your lungs, "What Does Sick Look Like to YOU"?

Or do you just roll your eyes and walk away?

If so, then chances are that you live with a chronic medical condition, cancer, disease, or disability.

My chronic disease happens to be blood cancer: chronic myelogenous leukemia. I have been living with and fighting CML since February 2011. That is more than thirteen years!

Wait, what? You have had cancer for thirteen years? Yup! I sure have and I try my very best to live my life; to the fullest, with an optimistic attitude and a smile. When you see me out and about, traveling, dancing, or even going to a play or lunch, that is one of my good days. A day that I may forget I even have cancer. I love those days, those are the days that make the fight worthwhile.

What you don't see is the aftermath of having good days. They look a little different; there are the days that I do not get dressed until the afternoon, and I spend many hours sitting on a heating pad or running to the bathroom every five minutes. 

There are days that I am fatigued, not the type of "tired" that a nap helps, but a fatigue that makes everything an effort, an extreme effort.; an " I am not going to get anything done today" kind of fatigue.

There are times I just push through, and other times I just give in. Giving in to that type of fatigue means allowing yourself the grace to rejuvenate. To not feel guilty about taking a few hours or days to heal.

Fighting a chronic condition looks different for everyone. No one should be made to feel guilty, or less of a person because of their illness, so next time you see someone pre-board a plane, skip a lengthy line at a museum,  park in a handicapped parking space, or ride one of the scooters at the grocery store, do not pre-judge them. 

You do not know their story, you do not know how hard they might've worked to get where they are at that moment, and you do not understand the toll it is taking on them, to be there.

Have a little grace and compassion, at the very least, do not point, stare, and snicker. Remember, someday you too may have an invisible illness.

FaceBook: CML: A Place for Hope and Humor

#chronicillness  #fundraiserforleukeia  #chronicmyelogenousleukemia  #Bosulif  #leukemia  #lovemylife  #cml #travellingwithcancer #leukemialymphomasociety  #cmlspecialist #lightthenight  #thrivingwithleukemia #livingwithcancer

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Bricks for the Brave!!