Happy Friday! What a crazy week it’s been for me. *whew*
Yesterday, one of our local SoCal EndoSisters wrote this in our private Facebook group. It was so freakin’ encouraging and uplifting, I asked if I could share here with you today. Obviously, the answer was yes.
“Sometimes, especially when the pain is bad, it is hard for me to remember the things I am thankful for.
I am going to say now, this post is not meant in any way to lessen what we go through, the hardships we manage, but it is one of thanks. Chronic pain, although often debilitating, is not always terminal and doesn’t always mean we are at risk of losing our lives.
Today, I’m thankful that my burden in life is pain and I thank my stars that I don’t have to deal with other chronic issues, where a misstep, or lack of medication, means I could lose my life early. I don’t wish pain on anyone, but I think of those who struggle with healthcare and doctors when their life is on the line, and it makes me thankful I just have to deal with the pain (even though sometimes it makes me feel like I’m dying or makes me wish for it just to end).
I’m thankful I don’t have to worry about conditions that, left unchecked, could mean limb loss (like diabetes), that I don’t have to be confined to a wheelchair as I slowly lose the ability to control my muscles, and even risk not being able to breath on my own down the road. I’m thankful that on good days I can go for a hike, or even just go meet my friends for drinks (even if I am losing the ability to tolerate alcohol without it setting off a flair and I just have water). I’m thankful that I’m not stuck in a hospital bed, confined to a sterile room, even if I’m a frequent flyer. And sometimes I have to remind myself to be thankful when things are bad. Not because others have it worse and I don’t have the right to feel bad, because sometimes it is the only way I can get through what I’m dealing with. It is my coping mechanism. It sometimes is the only way for me to deal with the bad days to get to my wonderful good days, that I don’t take for granted anymore.
This disease can easily crush us mentally, make us lose hope, but on those days where I feel well, or well enough just to do things on my own, I’m thankful. I’m hopeful that someday we will find a solution to our condition, and be given our lives back, or that those much younger than us, will never have to suffer like we do.
And I’m thankful for a community of people like you, even if I’m not often present or involved, and haven’t really met any of you yet. I’m thankful when I see, even through the pain and unfairness, that you all haven’t lost your empathy, your compassion, your supportive natures. It is so great to see people that suffer daily themselves willing to put themselves out there to offer support or love to others dealing with the same thing, strangers we don’t know but are tied to through our shared suffering.
I’m NOT saying that we should ignore what we deal with because “others have it worse”, I’m not saying that at all. What we deal with is real, has huge physical and emotional impacts on our lives, I’m just not ready to give up and roll over and hope I can always find a reason to be thankful, no matter how bad things get. Because what do we have if we don’t have hope? And sometimes that hope is the only thing that can push us past the worst.
I wish you all the best, I wish you strength and pain free days, days where you can still get out and live and appreciate what those days mean. And I wish for all of us that a cure if found and someday we don’t have to worry about young girls finding themselves having to suffer through each day or each period.” ~Ashlie McCormick
May we all hold onto the hope and strength offered in these words.