Chronic illness often leaves me feeling frustrated with my physical and mental health. When I am feeling overwhelmed by my body’s symptoms or experiencing emotional distress, I am not the best person to be around.
When my internal organs seem out of my control, I have a hard time articulating what my needs are. This makes it hard for doctors, medical professionals, therapists, and family and friends to know exactly how they can help. I become moody, argumentative, and aggressive, and I struggle to find hope in these moments.
When life feels too overwhelming, I am thankful for the people in my life who don’t give up on me. These are the people who have been around for every emotion and have toughed it out just as much as I have.
I am fortunate enough to have a group of medical providers that cares about me as a patient and a person. I am grateful for the doctors who keep looking for solutions, medications, and ways to manage my symptoms. I praise the surgeons who aren’t afraid of a challenge and aren’t intimidated by a surgery that requires innovation and creativity. I am thankful for my therapist, who has guided me to learn to accept my health conditions even when it’s easier not to.
I would be lying if I said I didn’t sometimes have a “what is the point?” mentality. This thinking leads to self-destructive behaviors. When I am thinking this way, I take on an “I’m done” attitude. I convince myself that I am done taking medications, done going to hospitals, and done with doing the right thing if it isn’t going to lead to positive outcomes. I feel lucky to have people in my life who notice these types of behaviors and notice when I’m battling these “what does it matter?” thoughts.
This thinking only sets me up for failure, and I eventually realize that the only person this attitude hurts is myself. In these moments, the people in my life who show me patience, sympathy, empathy, and compassion are the ones who help me out of this toxic headspace. It is important to have people in my life who express love and encouragement even when I’m agitated and confrontational.
When it’s difficult to see my physical health getting any better or to find any potential solutions, I lose hope. Being in this state of mind is not fun. It can feel isolating and depressing, and it doesn’t leave much room for positive thinking. I am grateful to my support system for being my strength in these times.
Knowing there are medical professionals who are fighting for my health makes me want to continue fighting, too. My support system, consisting of my family, friends, doctors, surgeons, and therapists, is a constant reminder that people aren’t giving up on me, even when it’s hard. This helps me regain hope, strength, and a desire to keep hanging in there.
Note: Pulmonary Hypertension News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Pulmonary Hypertension News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to pulmonary hypertension.