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20 Gifts People With Chronic Illness Really Want for the Holidays

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Sure, you could get your loved one who lives with a chronic illness a typical holiday gift, like a box of chocolate or jewelry. You could also consider gifting them something that will help them deal with their illness and shows you’re trying to understand and sympathize with what they’re going through — things like comfy clothes, gift cards to online delivery services, or even helping them run an errand.

We asked our Mighty readers with chronic illness to share what gifts they would really love to open this holiday season. Loved ones, take note: these are the items and experiences that would help them with the day-to-day of their illness and provide some love and support. And if you have a chronic illness yourself, perhaps these ideas will spark some ideas for your own wish list.

Here’s what they told us:

1. “Pajamas would be nice. A pair that looks like daily clothing so you can go to bed at any moment of the day but can wear inside the house without people noticing you’re wearing PJs.”

2. “Money. To help me move out. I’m trying to get a place of my own (finally), but living on disability means it’s very difficult, especially when it comes to buying things like furniture.”

3. “Massage gift certificates. Gentle Swedish massages are great for my fibromyalgia pain and can help my muscles relax enough to work and function.”

4. “CVS [pharmacy] gift cards! Medicines are expensive. Also, books. I read a lot at the hospital or try to. Maybe some good movies you would recommend for when I’m home sick.”

5. “I’d rather they give me some of their time by helping do things I cannot do — so maybe drive me to nearby places and clean bits of my home which I cannot reach.”

6. “Physical help around the house: grass cutting in the summer, snow shoveling in the winter, help on plastering that last room, another little oil-filled electric radiator for the living room to help keep the room warm and toasty this winter.”

7. “A gift to someone less fortunate fighting my disease. I want them to know that someone who is also fighting their disease is there for them and is understanding of what they’re going through.”

8. “A ChronicAlly box subscription, Therapearl ice packs and more PJs from The Royal Standard, which are the softest ever and worth every penny.”

9. “Gift cards because I like to pick my own blankets, pajamas, socks. The fabrics are so important. An Amazon gift card is great to give to someone with chronic illness. Also local restaurants gift cards for a day I cannot cook.”

10. “I would love the Sunbeam heating pad with massage. It’s a newer one I saw last year that covers all the important areas. It covers neck to front of chest and down entire back. Mine currently is old but working. Any items that help with pain are always a godsend. Heated slippers. Heated gloves. Ear mufflers are always appreciated.”

11. “Comfy legging-like pants that don’t look too much like thin leggings. (Jeans and regular pants hurt on bad arthritis days). Nice tops that are also flexible, loose, but chic enough to wear out and to work.”

12. “Boots with good tread, wedge pillow, fleece lounge pants, a long-handled dust pan for sweeping, the souls of those who said it’s all in my head, a cane with spikes for walking on ice.”

13. “Honestly I think people’s time, company and letting you know they’re thinking of you is the best gift. Just texting even once a month to ask how you are and say you’re on their mind does wonders! And it really takes so little on the part of the person.”

14. “A donation in my name to an organization that helps others become educated about their illnesses and educates the public as well. Sometimes when first becoming diagnosed, it is difficult to find reliable information, and I know there are a couple I hold dear to my heart because they held reliable information when I needed it.”

15. “A fitness bracelet to encourage and track needed painful physical activity, and a heated blanket to sooth the inevitable aches and pains a bit.”

16. “A day of pampering for my mom and husband who take care of me daily. They sacrifice a lot and make very hard decisions to accommodate my illnesses.”

17. “Bath anything! The bath is the one thing that can relieve my pain and stress at the same time, so it’s a thoughtful and practical gift.”

18. “An evening out to a concert or a play just to escape my reality.”

19. “The aromatherapy heated bean bags that you can find at craft shows and on Etsy.”

20. “Hugs. When you are having a bad pain day or when you are down emotionally it feels wonderful to get a hug from someone you care about.”

What gifts would you add to this wish list? Share in the comments.

 20 Gifts People With Chronic Illness Really Want for the Holidays
Originally published: December 8, 2016
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