“If I could do anything as a health activist…” Think big! Money/time/physical limitations are no longer an issue. What is your biggest goal that is now possible?
If I could do one thing and one thing only as a health activist it would be to make sure no one with a chronic illness ever feels like they are alone. Or rather, I would want to set up some type of organization that ensures no one with a chronic illness has to go through life alone.
I have an enormous amount of respect for those people who have gone through or are currently struggling with some type of chronic illness with the absence of a support system. When I was younger and on the pediatric floor of the hospital, I could never comprehend how a parent could leave their child alone in the hospital. And as I got older, I still couldn’t fathom how an individual actually survives a hospital stay without someone by their side. I would come home from each traumatic hospitalization to two parents who loved and took care of me. It gave me time to regroup to some degree.
Being a person with a chronic illness is a like a full time job in a lot of ways. The number of doctors appointments that a person has to go to, phone calls to insurance that need to be made, prescriptions picked up, decisions that need to be discussed, etc is really insurmountable to anyone, let alone someone who is incredibly ill.
If I could do one thing as a health activist, assuming time, money, physical limitations and all that jazz were not an issue, it would absolutely be to make sure that everyone who is struggling has someone by their side.