How My Sarcoidosis Inspires Me to Be Creative Every Day

After I was diagnosed with sarcoidosis, I spent weeks circling the drain of self-pity.

I was convinced my problems were worse then anyone else’s. I blamed myself. I cursed God. When my wife tried to talk to me, I was tight-lipped and curt. I was angry and afraid and spiteful. Why was this happening to me? I believed I was too young, too important and too full of promise to be stricken with such a mysterious disease.

As a child, I dreamed of becoming a writer. Sitting on the edge of my bed, I would scratch down stories in a notebook. Stories about a superhero chicken, a baseball-playing iguana and 15-year-old aerospace prodigy named Gunnar, who was chosen to lead a select group of teenage astronauts in a shuttle mission to Mars.

But then I grew up.

I got my first job flipping hamburgers, bought a car, tried to meet girls and stopped writing. I went to college, became a teacher, met a girl, got married, fathered three children, got sick and, in one of the most important decisions of my life, started writing again.

“Creativity is a great motivator because it makes people interested in what they are doing. Creativity gives hope that there can be a worthwhile idea. Creativity gives the possibility of some sort of achievement to everyone. Creativity makes life more fun and interesting.”

— Edward de Bono

Sarcoidosis inspires me to write every day. Although I can’t predict the course of my disease, I am responsible for every word I write. When my words are fastened and forged together, they energize me with power and strength to fight my fickle disease.

If you have a chronic illness, I urge you to return to your childhood and become a creator again.

Creating is a profoundly constructive way to distance yourself from your pain and to remind you that you are stronger than you think you are. Paint, draw, sculpt, build a birdhouse, make Christmas ornaments, restore an old car or create a new dish with a Crock-Pot.

Create whatever makes you soul sing. Despite popular belief, creating is not about money or fame. It never has been.

It’s about totally losing yourself in a process until your self-pity is silenced, your spirit is renewed and you’re afforded needed relief from the pains of living.

Follow this journey on Write On Fight On.

Lead photo source: Thinkstock Images

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to Sarcoidosis

Close-up of a man in a red striped sweater reading a book

20 Things I've Learned Since My Sarcoidosis Diagnosis

A few days after a muscle biopsy procedure my doctor called and delivered the name of my mysterious internal antagonist: Sar-coy-something. As I scratched down its letters on the back of a Chinese takeout menu, he explained the intimacies of my disease, offered some reassurance and outlined a plan of attack. When the call ended, [...]
blood glucose monitor

5 Tips to Keep in Mind If You’re Facing a Gestational Diabetes Diagnosis

It was 5 a.m. on a Friday when I shuffled into our kitchen. All I wanted was a cup of half-caff. Instead, I opened the refrigerator door and swigged a syrupy orange glucose drink. I was 25-weeks pregnant, and this was the day I would get screened for gestational diabetes. I weaved through traffic with early morning commuters [...]
Olga Mecking

My Life With Eczema in the Summer

Oh summer — the time of hot weather, sweaty bodies and naked skin. For me, it’s also the season of itchiness. When I was a teenager, I went through all the changes that can be typical for this period: I grew myself a pair of boobs, my hips got wider and zits started appearing on my face. [...]

What I Didn't Know About Endometriosis Until My Girlfriend Was Diagnosed

When your significant other has health problems, you may as well have health problems. It’s like one day you’re having brunch talking about what concerts you’ll see together this summer, and the next time you’re in that cafe, you’re talking about what the surgery options are and how much they cost. Can you imagine that? [...]