Before being diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis (in-ter-stish-uhl sĭ-stī’tĭs), I knew some ladies with chronic Illness. I knew a bit of her struggles and she had confided in me some of the challenges. I had petitioned the Lord on her behalf many times for supernatural wisdom, strength, and divine blessings. What I didn’t know was that the chronic illness sub heading- label encompassed so many other conditions and so many women of ages and back grounds.
Now nearly five months into this thing I know quite a few women and men that struggle with the reality of these diseases. Many of them have messaged me and asked me to add them to my thoughts and prayers. My aim and goal with my blog is to bring awareness to people about I C and to glorify God in the process. This is my small thing that I can do to bring light and hope into a world of such sickness and hopelessness.
Many of the chronic illnesses are auto-immune cousins; they share overlapping symptoms and limitations. The ages of some of these ladies would astound you… this affects not just older adult women but some cases children, teens, and women in their prime. These women are not all unhealthy, over weight, junk food junkies, or lazy lassies. They aren’t limited to the United States. There are women here and abroad struggling with the same symptoms.
There are a lot of blogs and Facebook pages out there to feed from for information. After being diagnosed I poured myself into finding out everything I can. Joining these groups to read what these women have experienced firsthand in real time conversation. That is where I have learned the vast amount of info I’ve gathered on my condition is from other women. The books and doctors are helpful but sometimes seem to have little information to all agree with. Some doctors half hazardly practice with a vague “try this” mentality. Certainly there are even physicians that don’t recognize it as an actual condition.
The stories of women in remission from symptoms are few and far between. Determining what they did and how they did it to replicate it to fix oneself is a goal that we all are in search of. It is so true that each of us are different and I’ve pieced together that what works for me doesn’t necessarily work for another. I have read of the female plight with this disease and it’s not just physical. There are emotional troubles with the lack of family support or judgmental family or friends that over analyze to conclude its just laziness. A feeling of hopelessness sets in when you can’t get relief from pain and a vast many of these ladies have no faith in God.
The last one there- is what I cling to-my faith in God and daily walk with Jesus. I would probably give up, shut my doors, and hide for good if I didn’t have that constant of God in my life. Even with sickness he doesn’t want us to hide within ourselves. I knew this lady once not much older than me. She had multiple chronic illnesses and I believe she was too embarrassed or ashamed to share or reach out. If she had spoken up, who would hear her, who would support her, who would pray with her? She did have the family support of her children who helped as much they could. She was a nurse with connections in the medical community. She was in constant pain feeling as though she couldn’t get relief. She ended up overdosing on pain medication to end her struggle with the diseases. She had reached a state of hopelessness and despair. The disease had not only taken her body but mind. She’d given up all hope but what of her soul?
What she hadn’t realized is that nothing can take your soul- if you have Jesus. The diseases may take your bodies freedom and hold you captive- but it can’t have the liberty in your soul. Only God has power over the soul.
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)
That Liberty is given to you by God! Liberty is unalienable- it can’t be taken away from you. The song in your heart, the peace in your soul, the joy you feel down in your heart is liberty from God Almighty. God wants you to lean upon him in your hour of distress and grief. I believe that if you call upon- he will save you! I believe he grants us grace in moments of weakness. If you wanna check out how easy it is to get eternal spiritual liberty- check it out in the Terminal for Sorting Souls .
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Romans 10:9-10)
Not everyone feels equipped to help someone with chronic illness. Many people feel overwhelmed and hopeless themselves as what to do to help. Here are a few things that I think would be appreciated by a person with chronic illness.
- Share your faith… Especially if the person isn’t a saved Christian.
- Be gentle, not pushy, and accept their decision.
- Continue to pray for them.
- Random messages, phone calls, texts, or old fashioned card in the mail – that will brighten a day.
- Know what they can have and can’t in their diet- surprise them with a treat that won’t make them sick.
- Flowers always make me smile. They naturally have a way to brighten a room.
- Offer to help with a task- like cleaning need or a craft project.
- Just be a friend to listen to them vent.
- Pay a visit—but call first! 🙂
It’s OK to not have all the answers. You don’t have to be on call 24hrs a day either. We get tired of being a pity party or feeling like a breakable china doll. Our lives have changed so much. I don’t want to lose a friendship also.