chronic illness

Please welcome our Guest Blogger, Annie!

I have been following Annie’s blog, It’s Time to Get Over How Fragile You Are, for some time now and have been so encouraged by her writing!  She’s a fellow warrior against chronic illness so I was super excited when she agreed to do a guest post over here at A New Kind of Normal!  (all images were found at

My name is Annie Martin and I write a chronic illness blog called It’s Time To Get Over How Fragile You Are.  My kind of “a new kind of normal” isn’t exactly new, but it most definitely isn’t the “normal” most people know so well.  I have been sick and a medical guinea pig my entire life, but only within the last two years have I been shutting down to the point of being bedridden 70+% of the time as a result of a severe CFIDS/Fibromyalgia/Bipolar Disorder/autoimmune disorder flare.  I think my new medications are working to lessen it though (silver lining!!).

 Now I sit here and try and debate what kind of inspired words I can give to Jamee’s wonderful blog. 
So here goes nothing:
·         Try not to be angry at your circumstances.  This is one of the hardest things to accomplish, as life certainly isn’t a cakewalk for those of us who can’t even function on the most basic level.  Anger accomplishes nothing but sadness and ennui when it is not channelled into something more productive (for example – I write my feelings away!)

·         If you are stuck in a house by yourself for long periods – keep programs/music on the radio and/or television!!  It is my source of avoiding loneliness and feeling like I still am connected to the rest of the world.  I still recommend keeping up as much of your social activity as possible though, as it is far more gratifying.
·         Obviously, try to maintain a job.  But if that isn’t an option, at least make sure to keep a few hobbies going on the side.  I still manage to be able to write, do some paintings, and collect some books.

·         Keep yourself inspired.  Surround yourself with inspiring people, look at inspiring images, read inspiring books – as a result, everything you touch will be infused with inspiration (the same goes for surrounding yourself with depressing things, so try to keep those to a minimum).

·         Let your caretakers (as well as any other family and friends) know how appreciated they are.  Most individuals with chronic illnesses struggle with this at various points, especially when in a lot of pain.  It’s as hard (or nearly as hard…who knows?) to be in their position and not capable of easing our suffering.

·         Write to-do lists.  My memory is not nearly as good as it once was, and if I don’t write it down – it’s definitely not going to get done.  Make them do-able though, as there is no reason to make yourself feel any guiltier for not accomplishing everything you used to be able to do.

Add to this list blog readers!  I’ve learned a few good lessons, but am always in need of a few more!
Be sure to head over to Annie’s blog It’s Time to Get Over How Fragile You Are as I am a guest blogger there today as well!  It is so nice to have a community of warriors 🙂

I love hearing from you!

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