I have always loved the saying, don’t judge a book by its cover. I believe the same thing goes for people. So many of us will look at someone and think certain things about their appearance. If that person looks fabulous, many wouldn’t believe they were dealing with any kind of health problem because they look just fine. This is something we all can relate to. We have all judged someone in one way or another. It is definitely something we all need to work on. People with an Inflammatory Bowel Disease, those that live in chronic pain, and/or have other health problems tend to be characterized as having an invisible illness. People can’t see what we are going through underneath it all.
There are some people who talk about their health problems to everyone either in person, or via the internet. Then you have the other half that likes to keep it to themselves and maybe their family. Both sides are fine to be like depending on what you are comfortable with.
Personally I relate to the second half I wrote about above. I would really like to give my reasons for this so people can understand. First, I don’t want to cause people any extra worry or stress in their life. When people ask me how I am doing, I normally answer with, I’m fine or I’m okay. People stress and worry so much about their own things, why should I add to it? Second, I try to look nice or decent when I go out in the public. If someone sees you looking really bad they are going to ask a lot of questions. I do not like this. I like to keep to myself and again don’t want more people to worry about me. Also, I really get tired of explaining all the things I am going through. I have about three major medical problems going on right now and it’s hard to talk about. Third, I don’t post everything I am going through on Facebook. I am just not like that. It’s fine that people do, but I have realized that some people only believe things if it’s posted on the web.
What I am trying to get across to people is that you should never judge anyone or anything by the way they look. You don’t know if someone is secretly fighting for their life, suffering from a chronic illness, or an invisible illness.
Thank you so much Megan Alloway for sharing some of your thoughts about chronic illness life and just life in general. There were couple of things said in this post that I have felt but never thought was important enough to say — I see how very wrong I’ve been all this time by excluding these feelings from some of my own writing. I appreciate you showing me (at the very least) that I am not alone with these thoughts and emotions.
If you would like to write something about life as an Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis) or chronic illness patient, please email me at marisa@journalingIBD.org so we can chat about it