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5 Things I’d Like to Hear Around Holidays

Did you get enough sleep? or Need to take a nap? I’ll take care of dinner.

Sleep is the number one trigger for my Crohn’s to take aim against me. Even the difference of one night of sleep (or lack thereof) will mean consequences for me no matter if I only lose a few hours. Even as a kid I had difficulty sleeping. My body has never wanted to just relax and it’s harder when you are chronically ill and never know how you’re going to sleep. You can plan for some things, but sleep is just not something that I can prepare for all that well. Naps are an important part of my schedule when I’m in a flare or feel like my health is heading in the wrong direction.

Is there anything I can do on ______ to help make it easier on your body?

Crohn’s & UC affect so many organs. My joints are very affected and my skin has done some awful things due to being on biologics. It’s important to be honest with your partner and let them know your extra-intestinal manifestations. They differ from person to person, but will always be annoying, painful and emotionally draining. Accepting help is sometimes the hardest choice to make and it can feel like you’re giving in the towel.

I put a blanket in the dryer so you can curl up with it in about 20 minutes. How does that sound?

Knowing somebody cares about you that much and does something so simple that is incredibly thoughtful deserves to be on this list. Our caregivers spend so much time with us – good and bad, that hearing a simple thing they’ve done for you means the world when we need it most. (I’m a sucker for a warm, cuddly blanket!)

Is there anything special you’d like to eat that you can have in the next few days?

My family & significant other know that sometimes when I go to family holidays, I may not eat. Usually, I like to snack on something small before I get to where I’m going. I’m not able to eat a lot of what people bring when it’s a potluck style gathering, so I prepare ahead of time by grabbing something to eat that I know will not bother me when I am visiting relatives during holidays. It is something I’ve definitely had anxiety and restlessness about – eating during the holidays.

I support you.

Really, all we want to do is feel validated when we don’t feel well. And when we talk about our disease, we want the person on the other end of the conversation not to just listen, but to actually understand (or try to). Hearing this is what we really need to be reminded of, especially if the holidays are difficult and revolve around your IBD.

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