I just wanted to take a moment to encourage you during these crazy times that we’re going through. I’ve been trying to write this post for the last two weeks but haven’t been feeling well enough to do so. I had a bad chemical and mold exposure that pushed me over the edge and the myalgia and nerve pain were extremely overwhelming. Thankfully this week I’m able to type and resume most of my at-home activities.
I know many of you are in similar situations, not just now, but you’ve lived in pain and in isolation for weeks, months or years. I want you to know that you’re not alone, we’re all in this together.
Events these past few weeks have shed some light on the plight that many of us face.
The isolation, the loneliness, the fear of getting sicker, the anguish and the perpetual grief felt by many people who have lost so much and who continue to lose because of disabling conditions are very real.
We’ve been through many self-imposed quarantines.
We’ve worn masks from before they were a thing and have been labeled as socially awkward and weird.
We’ve had moments where we couldn’t breathe or move or walk and despite our need, we couldn’t seek out medical attention.
Many of us have missed out on jobs, promotions, family gatherings, graduations, starting a family and so much more.
We’ve been looked upon as modern-day lepers, freaks and crazy people.
We’ve lost friends and loved ones not because they passed away but because they left our side once they realized that we weren’t going to be the same anymore.
We’ve learned to live life online. To make friends, join prayer groups, utilize video chat and do most of what we need without leaving our home.
We’ve been told countless times that we don’t look sick although we may be incredibly ill.
Now for just a brief moment in time, the rest of the world is experiencing a little of what many people with chronic illnesses, visible and invisible disabilities go through on a daily basis.
It’s been sad to see news reports of people panicking and attacking one another in grocery stores. These times will either bring out the worst or the absolute best in people.
During times like these, I like to think about something that the late Fred Rogers said: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
Today people everywhere are scared.
Parents are having to stay home with their children due to school closures.
Breadwinners are losing work hours and will be unable to buy groceries if they can’t make enough to support their families.
Countless people in nursing homes will be isolated from their friends and loved ones.
Families living in their car, or in an RV or camping in tents will go without the security and protection that a safe home provides.
Dire situations can be seen all across the globe and although until now, we’ve been the silent ones, the invisible ones, and the forgotten ones, we now have an opportunity to be visible. To share with others and promote social change. To be the helpers amidst our own suffering and amidst the suffering of others.
Are you disabled because of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME/CFS)?
Are you confined to a room or a wheelchair because of debilitating symptoms? (Lyme, MCAS, PANS, AE)
Has Chronic Illness isolated you from everyday life? (Autoimmune Diseases)
This is the time to share all of these things. To raise awareness and encourage change.
With all of the experience we’ve gained and through the continual hardships that many of us have endured, we have a skill set that most of the world lacks right now.
Let’s share that with others!
Let’s help them through this season of madness by sharing bits from our own sorrows and how we’ve managed during extreme seasons of hardship.
Together we can do so much to promote change and to encourage others who are panicking right now.
Here are some ideas on what we can do.
I know that some people will be limited in their activities or what they can do and that’s OK, we love you and are rooting for you!
Host a FB watch party to discuss the reality of your illness and how you can relate to what’s going on right now with the COVID-19 virus.
Host or participate in an online prayer forum. Prayer is a powerful tool given to us by our heavenly father.
Write about your experiences and raise awareness about your health condition. Offer helpful tips that you’ve developed or learned along the way in order to cope and do everyday life.
For those inured by chemicals, speak out about your health struggles. Host a video day of your life and show just how much chemicals and fragrances affect daily tasks. Share medical studies and research that you can find here and here and here.
For those injured my toxigenic mold, don’t be shy about what happened to you or your family. Speak about how your exposure to toxigenic mold has limited your ability to live a normal life. Share helpful tips that others can use during these stressful times.
Start a Vlog where you can share insight into your daily world.
Encourage church leaders to share worship services, group studies, and fellowship gatherings online and help them see the need to offer support and help for those who are chronically ill.
If we all do something we can make a tremendous impact.
Before I go. If you’re reading this post and you don’t have a disabling illness or a chronic health condition, first of all, thank you for taking the time to read this. Secondly, I’d encourage you to help your neighbors in need. Go shopping for a sick mother or father. Mow the lawn for a family who is struggling and can’t care for their yard.
Give care packages to people in your community who lack basic necessities.
Provide financial assistance or gift cards to people who are chronically ill and don’t have enough money to buy food or to pay their bills. Lastly, check out this post to read more about how you can help people who have been made sick because of Environmental Toxins.
Thanks for stopping by.
God bless you!
Chemical Free Gal