bloggingchronic illnessfaithinfertility

30 Things About My Invisible Illness You May Not Know

1. The illness I live with is: endometriosis, fibromyalgia, and celiac disease
2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: Endo – 2003; Fibro – 2006; Celiac – 2010
3. But I had symptoms since: 2002
4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: Accepting that its ok to say “no”
5. Most people assume: I’m healthy because I work
6. The hardest part about mornings are: Getting over the morning stiffness thanks to fibro
7. My favorite medical TV show is: House – maybe he can figure out what is wrong!
8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: my TENS unit
9. The hardest part about nights are: Getting comfortable enough to fall asleep because of the pain
10. Each day I take __ pills & vitamins. (No comments, please): 15
11. Regarding alternative treatments I: am open to trying anythingafter clearing it with my doctors
12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: at the moment I’m writing this – visible – as at least I feel like my pain would be validated
13. Regarding working and career: I want to start a non-profit to provide counseling and resources for individuals (and their families) with chronic illness but for now, I am just working to pay the bills.
14. People would be surprised to know: I spent our first 3 wedding anniversaries either prepping or recovering from surgery.
15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: that I have no guarantees that I will ever be “healthy” again
16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: have the ability to support and encourage others who are experiencing the same thing across the country and the globe
17. The commercials about my illness: make me want to throw something
18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: Being spontaneous
19. It was really hard to have to give up: not getting to experience pregnancy
20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: blogging
21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: head to an amusement park and ride as many roller coasters as possible
22. My illness has taught me: that I am much stronger than I ever could have imagined
23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: offering a magical “cure” whenever you say you feel bad or am in pain
24. But I love it when people: say “I’m sorry you are hurting.  I will pray for you.”
25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~ Jeremiah 29:11
26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: allow yourself to grieve.  Its a part of the process and if you allow yourself to go through the steps, it really will make such a huge difference.
27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: that you can spend all day in bed and still be exhausted.
28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: brought over some chick flicks that I could watch in bed and relax
29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: it is so very important to raise awareness for these illness and support and encourage all of those individuals who battle these illnesses each and every day
30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: supported & encouraged.  Thank you for your support!

bloggingchronic illnessinfertility

The making of A New Kind of Normal: My Journey with Endometriosis & Infertility

Lately I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. Life is so strange. Just when you thinking you’ve got things figured out, BAM, something else gets thrown into the mix. I guess its God’s way of making sure we’re paying attention. I was thrown the first major curveball almost four years ago when I was diagnosed with endometriosis. Before my first surgery, the only thing I knew about endo was that it caused infertility which really had me nervous. But to my surprise, endometriosis can cause all sorts of things like chronic pain, fatigue, and all-around craziness in addition to infertility. Since my original diagnosis, I have had two additional surgeries and have endured countless tests and treatments. So now here I am unable to get rid of the pain and unable to get pregnant (which everyone tells me will “cure” my disease). But I refuse to be bitter. God has chosen this path for my life and I strive to see the best in it. Through my battle with endometriosis and infertility, it has truly challenged me to become more solid in my faith and lean on Him for strength. I strive to have the faith of Hannah (see 1 Samuel 1:1-28). I have also been given the wonderful opportunity to volunteer with the ERC (Endometriosis Research Center) and be a part of a wonderful group of young women who strength and determination encourage me every day. My goal with this blog is for me to become more courageous in living life with faith by sharing my journey with endometriosis and infertility. I am so excited to see what God has in store for A New Kind of Normal! God Bless!!