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Why I Write About My Chronic Illness

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It all started with me reading an article. I was on Facebook reading an article from a support group, and I had the idea to write my own article for The Mighty. I wrote my first article about the positives of my condition, and the next thing I knew it was published. Ever since then, I have been hooked. I am hooked on writing, I am hooked on advocating for chronic illness, and most importantly, I am hooked on the feeling of simultaneously doing both.

My first article was just for the fun of it, but what I didn’t realize was how much it would help others in my chronic illness support groups. When I posted the article, I was met with positive comments, shares, and friend requests. At that point, I realized I could really help others from my groups. I have since written countless articles about experiences I feel others in my groups can relate to. I have come to love the feeling of posting an article in a group and knowing it can help others going through the same experiences.

Recently I realized that I am not only helping others, but advocating for my condition in the process. I have a rare disease that few doctors know about, so by writing, I am spreading great awareness. I have had terrible doctor’s appointments where the doctor has never heard of my condition, but I have since decided that the more I write, the more awareness there is and therefore fewer ignorant doctors. I figure, if I do not advocate for my condition, who will?

Since I have started writing, it has turned into my outlet for emotions about my condition. After bad doctor’s appointments, I write. On bad pain nights, I write. On those few good days, I write. It has turned into my therapy without me even realizing it, and I will forever be grateful for The Mighty giving me a place to express my voice so young.

I encourage any of you with chronic illnesses to do the same as I did. Take a chance, write something amazing, and learn to advocate for yourself.

Watch Kaitlyn’s Meet The Mighty Facebook Live Q&A below:

Image via Thinkstock Images

Originally published: August 25, 2016
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