Chronic Illness, Mindset

Fearing What Is Ahead With Chronic Illness

If you know me or have followed any part of my journey you probably know I am an optimist. I’ve always felt like the glass being half full is the better option when taking on the challenges of living with a chronic illness. We have so much negative around us at times that it just makes things easier trying to bring a little positivity to a shitty situation.

BUT no matter what I am human, we all are, and that means we can not control everything that enters our minds. We can be having a perfectly beautiful day and boom; a random thought might come into our heads that changes everything.

Why do I bring this up? Because the other day I was going about what I thought was a pretty decent day and I was stopped in my tracks for a little while when thinking of the future. And I do not just mean what tomorrow might be like or even next week. I know that I can most likely handle anything in the short-term.

No, I am talking about the long-term future. What life might be like when I am 85 or even older? When I look at the battles I am currently fighting at 36, life is not always easy. But in comparison to what I will be later on in life, I am young and strong(ish) guy with my Crohn’s disease, asthma, and arthritis. Right now I can manage to get through 24 hours and be prepared for the next 24 as well.

The questions that popped into my head the other day was “With all my diseases which have NO CURE, what will life be like later on? How hard will it be to change my ostomy? How will I be able to walk well since my joints already hurt with chronic pain?” These questions and more come up for all of us, and while we can always look to our elders who are experiencing some of this right now, it is entirely different living it.

It can easily bring on anxiety and fear of what is ahead, so I wanted to share this great Ted Talk. This is all about the various challenges and fear one has when living with a chronic illness.

The Hell of Chronic Illness

There are times when I tell myself “Tech is going to catch up and I will be fine. There will be something to make it easier by then.” And then there is another part of me that thinks “What if something is developed, but I am not eligible to receive that care?” Then I think about one of my favorite quotes…

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself “I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along” You must d

o the thing you think you cannot do.

Eleanor Roosevelt

I always try to live in the now. Be present and make the most with any given situation. In the end, there will always be thoughts that creep in and impact us at that moment, but we have to remember to focus on the life we can live now, and not what may or may not be later on in this journey.

How do you deal with thoughts that creep into your head? How do you deal with thoughts about the future?

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