It wasn’t long before I was thinking about how things had changed and how that upset me so much. What else was Crohn’s disease going to take from me?
I wrote this the day after my first relationship since my diagnosis with Crohn’s disease broke down. I wasn’t at all shocked but it did stun me. I had to change. I had changed. But I was fed up and feeling awfully sorry for myself, I started to question who I was and what I was putting out there. I saw my illness as something no person would ever want to be apart of, let alone live along side. I thought my life was over, sadly.
Crohn’s disease robbed me of many things in the first year. My hair due to mediation. Weight loss due to inflammation. My confidence because I had a “pooping disease”. Friendships vanished because no one was willing to talk to me or let me talk to them. I felt isolated, alone and depressed. Going back to work was the only thing I was doing and even that I wasn’t doing well; I rushed back sooner than I needed to because I missed my old self. I didn’t realise my old self was dead and gone with that diagnosis, I had to build a new me, a new self.
It was a chance for redemption. A chance I needed to take.
So what has Crohn’s disease given me?
It was a long and winding road to today. And I doubt that what Crohn’s disease gives me isn’t just this list, I build on it every day.
It’s given me great IBD friends, a community of support, knowledge and humour.
It’s given me purpose. A sense of direction. A stronger moral compass.
It’s shown me how truly brave I can be.
It’s shown me that you can not judge a book by its cover.
It’s given me empathy, more than I knew of before.
It’s taught me to not take good days for granted.
It’s taught me how to enjoy my life. To be in the moment and do what makes me happy.
It’s taught me how essential it is to listen to your own body and respect it.
It sometimes makes me wish and pine for the old days on no hospital appointments, no needless, no tests, no doctors, of being healthy. But I know that in some way, shape or form this life was given to me, like this, for a reason. And I just have to find reason and purpose. And that is an adventure.
An adventure with a chronic illness.
A blessing , not a curse.
NB: Originally posted on Safe Space UK here