By Lillian China Smith
Some things we want can’t be bottled, brought, or swallowed to make us feel better when it comes to illness. Sometimes with illness, well, with me, I was unhappy that I was sick, and with my chronic illness. And I wanted to be better, and that unhappiness grew and grew because I wished that I could just be better. I wanted a solution so badly. I wanted a cure, I wanted a healthy body.
But I’ve had to learn to accept my body as it is, chronic illness or not, sick or not, and be happy as I am, and grow my own happiness, in all my body’s various states and forms, whether or not I’m stuck in bed with a flare, or whether or not I’m doing well that day. It’s been tough, because with illness, it’s not easy to always be happy. Illness is unpleasant.
Nobody wants to be happy when you are in pain. Nobody wants to be happy all the time when you are suffering. Sure, it is easier to look to sadness and wonder why you aren’t going to ever get better. But accepting facts as facts, and working on your recovery, and growing your own happiness, are a solution that you can change. That is something that you can take action on.
In my Recovery from Lupus and Chronic Illness, I have had to learn to grow my own happiness, regardless of what illness brings me. It is an inside job, meaning, being happy with your life, and yourself, no matter what happens. You are you, and that is what matters. Be happy with yourself first, love yourself, and grow from there. It sounds ridiculous, maybe to some, but it’s really the truth. Happiness doesn’t mean necessarily having everything that you want, it means having the simple things in life, and peace with yourself and kindness to others, and inner bliss and self compassion, as well as self respect, and self kindness, amongst other things. I always believed if I was well that I would finally be happy at last, and all my problems would be solved. But that wasn’t necessarily the case. I became happy when I made peace with myself.
When I finally did get better, and got “my life back,” it didn’t seem to make a difference to me, because I had already found happiness. I still have sick days, but I have found the sense of happiness that I was looking for when I was sick, and depressed about being sick. When I have pain now and again, I get frustrated, but, I don’t let it get me down. I feel like I have beaten that part of my life now. I remember times when I didn’t think happiness was possible, especially during flares, and I can tell you now, sitting here, that it is, and that recovery is possible, too. Today I am healthy, to my wildest dreams, and it shocks even me to think about how sick I was before. I am so grateful today to have this working body. I don’t wake up in pain, and I walk around, and don’t use a cane, and I don’t have sore joints, and I don’t take tons of pain medications. And, by some miracle, it has all worked out for me.
And, I am happy. And I worked hard to get there. I worked hard, on the inside, it took strength, and hard work, and determination, and a lot of hanging on in the dark moments, and thinking, “I won’t give up,” even when I wanted to, even if I thought I couldn’t get by, or get through it, or stick through it or last one more night. I tried, and I would think about one good thought to get me through that bad night, or that bad moment, for just one more time, just to make it one more night, of through that bad moment of that flare, and then I would be able to get through the pain for those five minutes, or that evening, and then I found myself waking up the next day and I could try again.
And here I am today, on the other side of it. And I believe now, I believe in hope, I believe these things are possible, I believe in miracles, big and small, because they have happened for me. Because I remember how dark it was for me, and how bad my bad moments were when I was ill, how dark those times were when I was in that bad place then, and how hard I worked for this happiness that I have today.
And you’ll have to work hard for your own happiness, with your illness, wherever you are with it. Whether or not you are at a place of acceptance with your illness, or whether you have a sense of happiness already with your illness and are at peace with it, maybe you already know that happiness is an inside job. And it is. I have found that happiness, is an inside job. It is something that you will have to work for. And you’ll have to work hard for it. Just like you’ll have to work hard for your recovery. It takes time. You’ll have to work hard and push and advocate with doctors, and the medications will take time to work. But you’ll get there in the end.
#butyoudontlooksick #autoimmunedisease #mentalillnesshumor #spoonie #invsibledisability #lupuswarrior #happiness #fibromyalgia #epilepsy #mentalillnessrecovery #mentalhealthhumor #depressionmemes #recoveryispossible #mentalillness #chronicpain #lupusdiagnosis #fibro #lupus #fibromyalgiafighter #fibrowarrior #mentalhealth #chronicillnessmeme #recovery #epilepsyrecovery #benlysta #invisibledisabilities #chronicillnessrecovery #fibroflare #disability #autoimmuneissues #youretooyoungtobesick #Depression #chronicillness #lupuslife #mentalhealthrecovery #autoimmunerecovery #lupusrecovery
Updated: Feb 14, 2021
By Lillian China Smith
I have had a variety of mobility devices over the years.
I used a cane on and off, but for a time I used a walker and also for a period I used two canes, and at some points a wheelchair. I am so grateful now to be in recovery from lupus.
Today, I don’t use a cane anymore. I have my energy back, my brain fog has improved, and I am almost completely pain free. There are days where it is worse or where my fatigue comes back. But I am cane free now, at least, and have been for a while, at the moment. My recovery has been slow but steady. It took a long time to get to this point. I was diagnosed with Lupus in 2012, and over the course of many, many years, I am now finally at the point where I have reached a level of functioning with my Lupus where I am having much more good days than bad. I have found a treatment that really works for me, after years of trial and error. I started that treatment in 2020.
Recovery is possible don’t give up —always seek better treatments, always seek better for yourself, there is hope, there is a solution out there for you. You can find it. Be your own best advocate and fight for yourself. Never give up hope that better is out there and that you can find it. You are your own solution and you are your own cure.
You have to push and advocate with doctors to get your needs across and explain what your situation is and how you are feeling and what you are looking for and what your end goals are, and if the treatment they are giving you isn’t giving you isn’t sufficient, fight harder. Never give up hope that better is out there. Seek alternative solutions. I know you must be thinking “alternative therapies, well, they don’t work,” but, that’s not true. I gave up, many times. I did, and I lay in bed, empty, and hollow, and desperate for a solution, and sought treatment after treatment, and tried nearly everything for my Lupus, and for my pain, until something worked. And you have to try everything that you can. That is how you find your own version of recovery. Alternative therapies may work for you, no matter how weird they sound. It doesn’t have to be tea leaves, or holding rose quartz stones I doubt either of those things would help (but they might)! You really never know, until you try. If you close your mind to it, then you have given up hope, and hope is really all you have left in the fight against your Lupus, especially on the worst days.
Hold onto hope that better is possible, and advocate for yourself. Advocate for a better treatment solution, with your doctor. Advocate for your needs. Seek better solutions.
Better is possible. You can have fewer bad days and more good ones.
#autoimmunedisease #invisibledisease #lupuswarrior #benlystaautoinjector #lupusawareness #recoveryispossible #chronicpain #nevergiveup #benlysta #lupusflare #invisibledisabilities #chronicillnessrecovery #lupustreatment #chronicillness #lupuslife #lupussupport #chronicdisease #autoimmunerecovery #invisibleillness #lupusrecovery
Updated: Feb 14, 2021
By Lillian China Smith
Tonight is my benlysta night — and I hate it! But it has made me so much better. It took ages to work but it did in time…(a long time). Now it doesn’t make me as ill as it did when I started. Even missing my dose by a few days makes a huge difference. I am feeling grateful— and I’m all smiles for my benlysta at injection time, even though I hate the injection, and how long it took me to get here with my health, because I’m all smiles for my lupus recovery.
#lupusfighter #medication #lupuswarrior #benlystaautoinjector #lupuschick #lupus #benlysta #invisibledisabilities #chronicillnessrecovery #lupustreatment #chronicillness #lupuslife #lupussupport #invisibleillness #lupusrecovery #grateful