Today marks the beginning of Invisible Illness Week, the week that was created to raise awareness about invisible illnesses. Approximately 96% of illnesses are invisible, which means that it may be impossible to tell the difference between someone with an invisible illness and someone who is completely healthy. Hopefully this week will serve as a reminder that it is important not to judge people on how they appear to be, because you don't know what it's like being them.
I've answered the 30 things meme to start of this week. I hope to blog more this week but I'll see how busy I get. The fact that this post has broken my long hiatus from this blog should tell you just how important this is to me. I encourage everyone to have a bit of
30 Things About My Invisible Illness You May Not Know
1. The illness I live with is: chronic migraine
2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: 2011
3. But I had symptoms since: have had suspiciously migraine-like symptoms for as long as I can remember
4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: realising that I actually have to go rest even if I feel like I haven't been doing much or other people are still keeping on going
5. Most people assume: that I'm completely healthy
6. The hardest part about mornings are: getting up, especially after less than 9 hours sleep. I really can't handle being sleep deprived anymore.
7. My favorite medical TV show is: probably House
8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: my iPhone. I can be in bed and still can go on the internet :)
9. The hardest part about nights are: remembering to go to sleep on time. It's especially hard when I should be going to sleep at 8pm because that's just so early!
10. Each day I take 14 pills & vitamins. (No comments, please)
11. Regarding alternative treatments I: love using essential oils, especially lavender. Lavender essential oil is amazing!
12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: probably invisible, purely because of the 'better the devil you know' philosophy
13. Regarding working and career: I hope to have a career in something and to be able to work in the future, though I can't say for sure that my health won't deteriorate and stop me at some point. But really, that could happen to anyone, no matter how healthy they are at the moment.
14. People would be surprised to know: that in a way I am grateful to have had this experience of chronic migraine because of what it has taught me. It's been kinda like an accelerated class on life lessons.
15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: just how fragile my body is. So much can go wrong and change your life forever. And no one is immune.
16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: be happy and have a full life. Things may be quite a bit harder now, but they're still possible.
17. The commercials about my illness: are stupid. I'm really talking about the general painkiller ones because there aren't any that I've seen specifically for migraine. The ones that go 'who has time for pain? no one, so take our drug which will definitely help!'. Those annoy the hell out of me.
18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: being carefree. I have to constantly worry about how I'm feeling so I can keep from increasing the level of my feeling horrible and I just rarely get a moment when I can forget about everything.
19. It was really hard to have to give up: my grades. They are quite far down the priority list at the moment.
20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: watching tv shows on my laptop. I never used to because I had other things I'd rather be doing, but it really is a good activity for low-energy days.
21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: probably study. This may sound weird but I'm not even kidding. I miss how effortless thinking about things was.
22. My illness has taught me: that sometimes it's impossible to do everything on your own, and that it's important to take care of yourself before trying to take care of others.
23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: 'I don't like to take painkillers/medicines.' I don't have an issue with their personal choice, but the way people usually say it gives me the impression that they think that taking medicines is bad/weak.
24. But I love it when people: do something to show they care. Like literally anything makes a difference. Sometimes these things are the best thing that happens to me all day.
25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: 'everything is relative'. I have no idea if someone has said that somewhere, but I find remembering this is important. Not everyone has the same definition of something. If you're talking about electrons then a uranium nucleus is as large as a barn. If you're talking about astronomical distances the moon is ridiculously close. Likewise, for some people something may be an achievement that someone else takes for granted. It's pointless to compare yourself to others because it's all relative.
26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: that eventually you will be okay. It may not be the type of okay you'd like, but it will be okay nevertheless.
27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: that I'm still doing things.
28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: just listen to me complain without judging.
29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: once when I was telling a friend about having a migraine all the time I was so nervous about their reaction that I was shaking
30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: a bit embarrassed, but kinda happy as well. Thanks for bothering :)