Chronic Illnesses produce symptoms that tax the body, mind, and spirit on a daily basis. These illnesses make it difficult to function in daily life.
These illnesses include fibromyalgia, chronic pain, heart disease, COPD, to name a few.
Mine include fibromyalgia, CFS, rheumatoid arthritis, degenerative disc disease and mitochondrial dysfunction. They all result in chronic physical pain. The pain ranges from sharp jabbing pain and throbbing pain to nerve pinching and intense pain. Measured on a scale of one to ten (ten being the worst), the pain is usually a ten and rarely decreases below an eight.
Pain is exhausting 😩. After a few hours the body, mind and spirit are fatigued and unable to function. The best that can be done is to take medicine and 😴 sleep. The effort decreases the level of pain to some degree making it possible to resume some physical activity.
Socialization becomes severely limited. Socialization is interaction with other people, communication, activities and events that alleviate stress from chronic Illness. It brings joy, relaxation, laughter, and interaction into the limelight.
Chronic illness limits ones ability to participate. We often chose not to participate because of symptoms and the effects on the body. It makes it difficult to tolerate the interaction (s) and fatigue makes it necessary to leave the situations within a short period of time. Eventually, the desire to socialize weakens.
Society doesn’t understand because pain is not physically visible like a broken leg or a splinted wrist. When an individual develops a chronic Illness is when they begin to understand the resulting limitations.
Relaxation techniques, rest, communication with a friend, and journal writing are helpful in releasing the pain and for self expression. It helps with refocusing and concentration by making our minds focus on something other than the pain.