I recently went to a conference where I met a lot of new people.
Which (necessarily) led to lot of introductions – and because this was a writing conference, it also led to a lot of answering the question: what do you write?
Which in turn led to explaining about this blog, and after that, about my Loved Ones – namely, my mum and my sister. After the first five times I got my ‘blurb’ down pat:
“I write a blog about loving people with chronic illnesses, as my Mum has multiple diseases including pernicious anaemia and type 1 diabetes (with all its associated problems) and my sister had a brain tumour and now her body does not produce any hormones.”
It was a ‘neat’ answer, but after offering it a couple more times I found myself growing increasingly uncomfortable. I found it difficult to repeat, to the point where I had to practically force myself to say it and felt like I was rushing to get it over and done with.
Continue reading “LTCI 4: Why Illness is not everything”
Hello, my name’s Emily and I’m a Skeptic.
If this sounds like a therapy group meeting, you’ll soon understand why.
But first, take a moment. Could this ‘greeting’ be applied to you?
If you’ve spent any length of time wandering around the Interwebs (Hello, Pinterest!) you know that there is no end to the suggestions, prescriptions or affirmations for people with Chronic Illness.
And I have a big admission to make.
From someone who doesn’t have a chronic illness, I sometimes find these a bit odd.
“3 postures to help with X disease.”
“The scent that will bring you peace even as you face X”
“Exercises you can do even if you have X”
At first I dismissed any such posts as ‘unnecessary’ – but now I try and approach them with humility. Why the change?
Continue reading “LTCI 3: How to balance skepticism with love”
How’s your mum? How’s your sister?’
These are questions I get a lot. They’re great questions. They mean people are thinking about my sick family members, and it shows that the people around me understand that their illnesses are a rather large part of my life.
Most of the time I appreciate the time taken to ask a question like this, and the implied preparedness of the Asker to listen to a ‘deep’ response.
The other week though, I got asked this question twice, and each time it left me feeling guilty.
I bumped into my landlady as I was leaving my house, and she stopped me with a smile, and asked, ‘How is your mum going? And your sister’s health – how is it?’
I smiled in reply – and then froze.
Continue reading “LTCI #2: Am I my family’s keeper?”