Not a Big Deal, Until You Experience it for Real | A Chronic Voice

Many chronic conditions are often overlooked because they don’t sound that painful or difficult to deal with. The person may even look well! Are they just craving attention, being lazy or faking it? Before experiencing these symptoms for myself, I too, have been guilty of ignorant and unkind thoughts within the privacy of my mind. […]

A Chronic Voice: 4 Everyday Scenarios We’re Not Sure How to be Polite About and Why

There are many things that healthy people do because, well, it’s pretty normal to do so. Yet such actions might be detrimental to a person with a compromised or weak immune system. This includes people with chronic or terminal illnesses, the young, pregnant and old. Not all the following scenarios are wrong per se, and […]

A Chronic Voice: #besideChronicBedside: What's by Your Bedside?

Join Me in Populating the Hashtag: #besideChronicBedside I started a little hashtag, which I hope sounds somewhat catchy! #besideChronicBedside (currently blank; I need your help to get it going!) captures the everyday lives of those with chronic illness, with a quick shot of their bedside tables. We all keep little objects beside us, things that […]

V2: What's the Real Financial Burden of Being Chronically Ill?

It is no surprise that seeing 10 different doctors on a regular basis is an expensive affair. My medical bills add up to a thousand dollars per month on average, which excludes the occasional surgery or experimental treatment. Let’s do a quick breakdown, before going on to the most important point. Doctor Consultation Fees This […]

Metaphors for Chronic Illnesses | A Chronic Voice

A thought-provoking excerpt from a book I was reading, which I find very applicable here: “Metaphor is the currency of knowledge. I have spent my life learning incredible amounts of disparate, disconnected, obscure, useless pieces of knowledge, and they have turned out to be, almost all of them, extremely useful. Why. Because there is no […]

Kick Ass With Kindness and a Sweet Cherry on Top

A Mundane Activity Embedded in My Memory There was this game we played in secondary school post-exams during some motivational course. Blank papers were stuck onto our backs, and we had to go around writing down a person’s best quality. I noticed that those who lacked immediate personality had the default words ‘sweet’ attributed to […]

A Day in the Life: Why Social Functions Are So Exhausting For Us

So your friend with a chronic illness has rejected your party invitation…again. Or they’ve included a list of T&Cs just in case they have to bail last minute. What’s up with that? Do they hate you or something? I booked a champagne brunch the other day for the boy’s birthday and thought, why not use […]

Why I Need to See 10 Different Doctors

Autoimmune disorders are a complex beast; no two patients are the same, despite having a shared illness. There is no standard medication, like antibiotics to treat a common flu. Every patient’s custom combination of drugs comes from trial and error. As a result, following up with only one doctor is usually insufficient. Various departments contribute […]

Don’t Compare, Your Life Destination is Your Own Special Mission

“Don’t set sail on someone else’s star.” – African Proverb What is the Problem With Comparison? Ah, comparison, one of the greatest sources of self-inflicted, needless suffering. So why don’t we all just stop? Easier said than done. “Am I smarter? Am I better looking? Is my cock bigger?” These are common questions that most […]

A Page From a Sick Girl's Diary: Sometimes I Wish I Was an Old Person

Recently I turned 30 and I was glad, but not for the reasons you might imagine. I felt relieved; relieved to leave the decade associated with boundless energy. I was questioned a lot especially in my early youth, “why aren’t you drinking? Why won’t you come to my party? Why don’t you have some fun?” […]

Sometimes Working Hard Means to Rest

Sometimes ‘to work hard’ means ‘to rest’, and for people with chronic illnesses, oftentimes getting enough rest means more than the average. The amount of rest your body needs in order to function cannot be compared to another person’s requirements; we are not robots manufactured on a factory belt. Sleeping is hardly inaction or a […]

Is it Better to Have a Visible or Invisible Disability?

To clarify before I begin – I have a variety of chronic illnesses that affect the blood, brain, heart and virtually any body part, but I know nothing about physical disability and have only been confined to a wheelchair once. So if I make a mistake in this article, feel free to correct me. Having […]

What "Living with a Chronic Illness" Really Means

What does the term ‘chronic illness’ really mean? What is the difference between a chronic and terminal illness? I often feel that the term in itself is not quite understood. Simply put, it is a permanent illness that might not kill you in the foreseeable future, but is something you will have to live with […]