The Pressure

When living a life full of flares, pain, and worries it can be easy to fall into that category of deep depression. To just feel like giving up. I know because I’ve been there more than a few times. I know first hand what it’s like to lose all hope. To feel like IBD has drained you of any and everything good left in your life.

Giving up isn’t easy

One thing that many people don’t understand is that when it comes to living with any chronic condition, “giving up” isn’t easy either. There’s no easy way to have an autoimmune disease. There’s no easy way to have surgery or try medications you know may not work. There’s no easy way to live a life of pain and suffering. It takes a lot. It takes a lot just to live. It takes a lot to get to the point of hopelessness and it takes so much more to get out of it.

For a long time I, myself didn’t understand. Days I spent away from work, curled up in a ball, I felt bad about. Not bad because of how I was feeling. Although that was pretty bad too. I felt bad because I wasn’t being productive. Because there were better things I could be doing with my time than sitting around feeling bad. I penalized myself for the boundaries I had to place on my body. I held myself to the standards of a healthy young woman in her twenties, rather than understanding I’m just not that person. I chose to push my body whenever I could and discourage myself whenever I couldn’t. It wasn’t right.

It’s okay

As people living with chronic conditions, we must cut ourselves some slack. It’s okay to love yourself and put yourself first. It’s also okay to not be perfect. It’s okay to not be okay. There’s more than enough pressure in the world today. The pressure society places on us, the pressure we place on ourselves every day to even get by with doing the basics of living. Don’t place more pressure and unnecessary stress on yourself. Celebrate small victories instead of comparing them to larger ones. Love your body and it’s faulty parts.

To be honest, I didn’t love myself for a while. There are still days that I struggle. There are still times when I look at myself and think “why me?” Or compare myself to others my age. That’s me being human. It’s okay to be human and get sad. It’s okay to be emotional. It’s not okay to dwell in sadness over what you can’t control. Face the pressures of life and IBD without adding more. It’s hard. It takes a lot of time and even more acceptance. It takes self-awareness and even quite a bit of self-control. It’s difficult, but not impossible.

I challenge you to write down one thing you’re grateful for every day

This is a quick and easy reminder of how blessed you truly are. It’s helped me through a lot of tough times, and my hope is that it will do the same for you.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The InflammatoryBowelDisease.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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