Monday, September 8, 2008

National Invisible Illness Awareness Week

Today kicks off National Invisible Illness Awareness week. It's an important week, recognizing everyone who has dealt and continues to deal with invisible illnesses. The illnesses scope in range, including eating disorders, migraines, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, depression, other mental illnesses, lupus, cancer, neurological disorders, lyme disease, thyroid disorders to name just a few. Any of these invisible illnesses have the ability to debilitate an individual's quality of life. Just because symptoms are not always prevalent on the outside doesn't mean the illness isn't real. I think for most people they just want validation and support. This includes not only from friends and family, but also professionals. An understanding ear can go a long way.

One website which I think is excellent is: But you don't look sick. The founder, Christine Miserandino, who suffers from lupus, created the site to give an outlet to those with invisible illnesses. The site is full of articles, essays, reviews, forums, and much more. For many, it has provided helpful information and support in feeling less alone.

A favorite on the site is Christine's Spoon Theory. If you haven't read it, it is well worth the read. I think it is applicable to many illnesses, including eating disorders. It reminds of spoons lost in my life and how I want to use the spoons I have left.

Christine is also going to be featured on blog talk radio today at 12 PM EST to kick off the week.


Gaining Back My Life said...

Thank you for sharing this; I have had chronic pleurisy for one year now - and it is always encouraging to know there are others out there who make it, every day, fighting like me just to try to live normally.

Tiptoe said...

Gaining, you're welcome. I think as this campaign becomes more prominent, others will start realizing that there are a out of invisible illnesses out there. Hopefully, that will help with an y kind of stigma attached.