Little did I know how much I should have appreciated my health throughout the first seventeen years of my life.
Looking back now, I probably did fall ill more often than my friends but at the time thought nothing of it. It must have been something I’d eaten, maybe I was over tired or I had just picked up a bug that was going around; never did I think I’d have the life sentence of numerous chronic illnesses associated with my name, and be inundated with hospital appointments, admissions and procedures. How could I possibly adjust? I doubted my ability to remember what ‘normal’ felt like.
Do you have any existing health conditions? The answer was no longer ‘No’, but instead I reeled off my list. Crohn’s Disease. Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. Postural Tachycardia Syndrome. Three conditions which months earlier I hadn’t even heard of.
Claustrophobia. I felt trapped in the words; my life dictated by illness. At 20 years old I imagined myself at university, travelling and exploring what the world had to offer but instead here I am taking in excess of thirty tablets a day, having to catheterise myself just to be able to wee, having more foods that I can’t tolerate than I can, and dealing with frequent hospital admissions, appointments and procedures.
I am what someone with an invisible illness looks like. It’s difficult beyond belief being told how ‘well’ you look, when the battle you’re fighting is raging inside.
This blog is a means for me to be able to post about my journey with my illnesses, to raise vital awareness of the conditions and to support others.
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Thank you for reading and for your support.