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Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Chronic Illness: Faith and the Future

Maureen Pratt Author PicFifty years ago, or perhaps even less, someone with a diagnosis of lupus could not expect a “normal”  lifespan. There was so little understanding of the disease, and few ways to treat the symptoms and flares, proctively or otherwise.

Today is a bit of a different story, as it is for other chronic illnesses. People still do die from lupus and lupus complications “before their time,” but, as one rheumatologist said, lupus patients today can expect a relatively “normal” lifespan, albeit an uncomfortable one.

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So, with that in mind, it’s a good idea, periodically, to reflect upon the future. And, actually, to envision the kind of life you hope to lead, even with a serious chronic health condition. To put your hopes to prayer, and to work today at being as strong as possible so that your hopes might, with God’s help and your medical team’s support, become reality.

Often, we color our thoughts of the future with the darkness that is ongoing, painful illness. We might think, “I don’t know…if I have to live with this disease for years, it’s not going to be fun/easy/enjoyable/purposeful.” Or, we might lose sight of the trust we have in God to bring us from today to tomorrow with more than a little bit of solace, comfort, and joy. We might not take steps today that can help us in the future (preparing for “retirement,” for example, or thinking about the care we might need as we age).

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But, God has a purpose for each of us, and a love for us that transcends the pain that clouds our minds and dims our spirits. As we reach to him now, and renew our trust in him, we can lift ourselves out of today and point toward a future that, yes, might still be punctuated with illness, but will also be filled with many good blessings.

Blessings for the day,

Maureen

  • CommonSenseThoughts

    I have been dealing with chronic pain conditions for around 30 years. While some conditions were relieved, another condition would be diagnosed. Most of the symptoms were / are on a daily basis. For many years while employed and increasing diagnoses, I worked through the pains. But after a while, I became too often debilitated.
    .
    The initial diagnoses were gradually leading me in to a disabled life.
    And over the years, that slowly helped me to accept my conditions for my disabled life. It’s just a way of life for me.
    .
    One of the important lessons I learned was: to live from moment to moment….for there is NO “planning” ahead with chronic pain conditions…not even planning for the next 5 minutes. The pains are always present -CONSTANT- but I never know when they will become more profound, what the intensity and duration will be…despite medication.
    .
    My pain conditions do not require me to use a cane or any type of aid.
    So it appears to others -WHEN I am ABLE to be in public with subdued pain- that I am perfectly fine.
    However, they don’t see me when I am home having severe to excruciating pains.
    .
    NOW FOR THE ANNOYING PART: just because people see me when I am able to function, they don’t understand why I am not able to function ALL the time.
    When I am not able to fulfill invitations or attend meetings or accomplish something in a timely manner or not at all, people have an issue about that.
    Since pains are not visible, people dismiss them as the reason I give…and then they become exasperated with me.
    .
    Another lesson I learned from my pains, is: they are a blessing.
    Having other problems on my mind, when the pain becomes intense, it is the ONLY issue that I can focus on. Therefore, pain relieves / distracts my mind temporarily from my other problems.
    .
    The only thing that is really difficult for me to tolerate, is that I am not able to keep up with my chores and routine demands. Then everything snowballs…becomes worse.
    .
    Good days, bad days?? My days are bad days, worse days.

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