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It's OK If Your Chronic Illness Makes You Feel Afraid

I am sick.

I am more susceptible to dangers surrounding my environment. Death and getting worse are things I am expecting eventually. With time, I learned by myself that it’s OK to be scared.

Healthy people surrounding us do not understand what we are going through. They say, “Your diagnosis is chronic, not terminal.” Or, “Doctors didn’t said you were going to die.” They simply don’t understand what we are going through.

We have gone through inhumane, unbearable pain that can not be explained easily to someone who has not gone through it. Waking up wishing you were dead because you can not stand your invisible pain one minute more. Then, getting the surprise of going to the doctor and them telling you it’s all part of your disease, that there is nothing to worry about. You want to scream, yell and kick, telling them to worry because you believe you are dying of pain, but nobody believes you because they can’t feel nor see it.

It’s OK to be afraid, because sickness does not come with a book of instructions and recommendations. Nobody warned you when you were born about what was about to come. It’s scary to know your body can’t protect itself. You feel like you are alone, like nobody gets you, and like you are drowning on the ocean and nobody will care to save you. We have each other, spoonies, and we must help and support each other. If we don’t, then who will?

I am Andie Abrego and I admit I am scared of living more than dying. I am scared of living in pain for the rest of my life, and not remembering the last day I felt good every moment of it. I am scared of not finding love, because maybe nobody wants to marry me, a grumpy sick girl.

It’s OK to be afraid, because even though our bodies don’t work properly, we are still human beings. We have feelings. We can listen to gorgeous music. We burst out in tears when our favorite character of a TV show dies. We enjoy eating homemade meals. Nevertheless we love each other. We are not robots. It’s OK to be scared.

Remember we are superheroes because we deal with double the workload “regular” people do.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or text “START” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.

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Thinkstock Image By:  EvgeniiAnd