2015 Is the Perfect Time to Weed out the Doubters
Life with chronic illness and severe chronic pain can be extremely difficult. Besides the unpleasant symptoms, chronic self-doubt, overwhelming frustration, lost opportunities, and ruined relationships, your life is plagued with doubters. These doubters are individuals who seem to live to criticize and condemn. They always assume you never try hard enough. They aren’t too shy to say (in their roundabout way) that you are lazy or unmotivated. They even sometimes stoop so low to imply that perhaps your condition is not nearly as bad as you make it seem--or worse, secretly believe that it is actually all in your head.
I have decided that 2015 will be my year to weed out the doubters. I may not be able to rid my life of every single one of them, but I’m waging war on the worst ones. I am tired of living day to day with these doubters making my self-doubts even larger and louder. My battle with my health issues is challenging enough as it is without the doubters “generously” offering their “help”.
Chronic illness and pain offer you no room for being lazy or unmotivated. Every little daily task--the kind of tasks that healthy people do constantly without a passing thought--can be difficult. If you decided to slack off or give up the struggle, you would basically be giving up on life itself. It takes that much focus, determination, faith, and inner strength to live with such health issues.
This is why I laugh at the doubters at times. Many people don’t realize that I have had severe fibromyalgia since 2008. And even more don’t know that I have suffered from chronic pain since I was a young girl. In some ways, my pain and other symptoms have become a part of my life. They have been around for so long that I honestly can’t remember what normal feels like. However, what some people fail to realize is just because you have a health problem for an extended period of time, there doesn’t come a magical time when suddenly that problem affects you no longer. Rather, it is a battle that we wage EVERY single day...without an end in sight.
I graduated from high school with high honors. I went on to finish a bachelor's degree with honors. I started a family. I began a freelance writing career in 2008, even when I became too sick to work outside my home. I continue to learn and evolve both personally and professionally, and I have no plans on stopping. My life may not be the cookie-cutter existence that the doubters seem to believe is the only way to live. But that’s ok. I love my life. I love the flexibility of working from home and being my own boss. I love being there for my kids and husband every day when they come home.
Ultimately, I don’t enjoy living with severe fibromyalgia and chronic pain, but I am proud of how strong, motivated, and determined it has made me. And I am happy that it has shown me that life is much more flexible than we realize. No matter what happens, we have what it takes to live on, if only we stay focused and have faith. That is something that the doubters in my life will never learn. I’ve tried to make them see this for years, so it is time to part company. It is time to throw off the useless cargo and soar into the great unknown of a fresh, new year. It is time to take 2015 in my hands and make it amazing!
Image Credit » Image created by Amanda Dollak