When I think back to January 2007, I can definitely see a lot of changes that have occurred over the last five years living with chronic illness.
Five years ago, I was planning my third surgery at the Center for Endometriosis care in Atlanta where I could be seen by one of the top endo specialists in the country. We had already had several unsuccessful rounds on fertility drugs (Clomid and Femera) but we still had that hope that we weren’t out of the game yet. The statistics were in our favor. After the recovery from surgery, we were going to step up our treatments to IUIs. Five years ago, I am pretty sure The Girldfriend’s Guide to Pregnancy was still on my nightstand so that I could be ready when the good news came.
Five years ago, I also think I was a lot more optimistic that the pain I was in was only temporary. I had already been diagnosed with fibromyalgia in addition to the endometriosis but there were still many options to try out at that point so with that coupled with the hope of relief promised by the upcoming surgery, I counted down the days until I would be pain-free and hopefully pregnant.
I will admit that I am probably a little harder now than I was then. I wouldn’t say that I am a pessimist as I do believe there is always hope, but I think I would consider myself more of a realist. Maybe caring less about what the statistics say and caring more about being heard by my physicians when I tell them that I am not better. Maybe caring less about dishes in the sink and the house not being perfect and caring more about the precious moments with my family. Maybe caring less about having all the answers and caring more about the hope that I can only find in Him and learning to walk by faith.
So have I changed in the last five years? Absolutely. Have I changed for the better? I think in some ways, yes. The last five years have most definitely been a challenge but I think that how we respond to the challenges molds and shapes us into the people that are we meant to be.