Grieving the Person I Was Before Chronic Illness


“Click, click” is all I hear while I sit in front of my computer screen biting my lower lip trying my hardest not to cry (telling myself I need to be strong). “Oh no,” I can feel a tear fall down my face; there is the beginning of me grieving the person I used to be. These days our social media has become the center of where we post our pictures and stories of our lives. I know I share everything on my pages – the good, the bad and the not so pretty.

Sometimes I scroll through my old Facebook albums or Instagram feed and I can see it. I can see how my chronic illness has changed me. It’s not just in my appearance, it’s in my actual expression. I look at the smile on the girl in the pictures today and she looks hurt or broken inside. The girl in pictures years ago, she looks alive – happy, free, with energy!

I want to be her again, more than anyone could ever imagine. But I can’t… I can’t do 90 percent of anything I did in those photographs and when I see them my heart breaks a little more each time. This isn’t my first time doing this and I doubt it will be my last. I need to know though, when will the day come that I no longer grieve the person I once was? The girl I can simply no longer be? This new me is different and she is having a hard time finding her way.

As soon as life slows down for a minute and she gets a moment to herself that’s when it hits. It feels like someone hit you with a bag of bricks and knocked the wind out of your lungs. You cry, you get angry, you get all types of emotions but there is no turning back.

I know I cannot let this go on any longer. I am sure it’s not good for my health. I’ve thought I had come to terms with my illnesses many times. This circle of sadness needs to be put to bed and not brought out any longer. I need to be stronger, keep going, fight and no longer look back.

But I doubt it will happen. I’m sure all of us have something we just can’t let go; unfortunately for me it’s my prior self.

Getty Image by SonerCdem


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