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To Anyone Feeling Ashamed of the Accommodations They Need for Their Illness

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I think the first step after being diagnosed with ___ (chronic illness goes here) is you have to change your lifestyle to adapt to your needs. The changes will not always come at once but sometimes they do, and if this is your situation, stop and breathe. Yes, it is overwhelming, but there are so many ways the world can adapt to you, or you to the world, however you want to see it. Many people still won’t understand why you wear a sweater under the hot sun or why you have a wheelchair if you can walk. That, my friend, should be the least of your worries!

I myself have been a victim of being ashamed of my needs. Sometimes you just have to face reality — this is my new life. Sadly it seems people need us to prove to them how sick we are. I don’t wish anyone to have a condition like the one I have but people sometimes get so annoying it makes you wish they could be in your shoes for just an hour and see how they deal with it. You have to learn how to mute all those negative voices and focus on you! If you end up in the hospital, you are the one dealing with all that, not those around you, so my advice is to not let them get to you.

If you can’t walk long distances or get out of breath, you could get a wheelchair or an oxygen tank (I have both). Don’t be ashamed! I myself cannot stand for too long so I also have a shower chair. I also have a ramp outside so I don’t have to deal with stairs. As one person told me, “If things can be accommodated to you why not!? It makes life easier and less stressful.” What she said is very true — we often keep things to ourselves so we don’t “bother” anyone, but that has to stop. You are already dealing with this illness, and just that one thing adds so much stress into your life. You shouldn’t have to deal with other small obstacles.

Think about yourself because if you don’t, maybe no one will. Keep yourself as healthy as possible. Be the best you and keep fighting.

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Thinkstock photo by Delpixart

Originally published: May 1, 2017
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