Medically managing a chronic illness or condition is the first and most important aspect in one's care. Being a partner with your health care provider offers both of you an opportunity to address your medical needs in the most efficient manner. Tending to the medical issues does not preclude addressing, psychological, social, spiritual, occupational,financial and recreational issues. Tending to the medical aspects do not automatically address all or some of these other emerging facets of living with a chronic condition.
However, we often hope that tending to the medical will get us back to work, playing tennis again, meeting with our friends, driving, and the list goes on. Sometimes it does, sometimes it takes a long time and sometimes we must face limitations.
In this post, I would like you to consider your social, emotional, financial, spiritual, occupational, recreational issues. Are you suffering in any of these areas? Are you falling short of your own personal goals and feel quite disenfranchised these days?
Yes or maybe answers to these questions are quite natural. Actually, admitting a yes or maybe right now is a very big step in dealing with a chronic illness/condition. It is from this vantage point that you can begin to consider ways to revitalize yourself.
First, make a list of your personal characteristics. This will give you some hints in what to seek out, such as; a support group, one on one therapy, volunteer work etc. It is important to tailor what you choose based upon who you are. I find that people who are suggested to go to a support group when they are shy feel even worse because they fall short of someone else's expectation for them. Instead attend a lecture where you can be anonymous or part of a larger group. From here you never know what you may learn or try but first and foremost you must be in charge of yourself.
Having said that, there is a big advantage of pushing the envelop and trying something new. That is very revitalizing.
Again, your health care provider most likely has many referrals for you to choose, psychotherapists, foundations specializing in your condition, peer support groups, volunteer programs, to name a few.
I welcome hearing from you. Next session, I will address some alternative/side by side treatments as I do not promote negating medical treatment. In the meantime, breath......