The past several months, I’ve been admiring a relationship.
A friend with a life-long chronic illness that could land her in the hospital at any moment is fueled with hope and support daily by a family member. Together they openly discuss the medical condition, loop in others for support and share information to educate those who are new to the world of managing a health condition daily.
It’s heartwarming and healthy.
If you’re juggling daily health management and don’t have a caregiver or close friends in your immediate network of support, there are additional ways to feel cared about, heard and understood.
4 Places to Find Support
- In-person support groups: Ask your healthcare professional if there are any support groups in your community. They might meet at a library, community center, religious building, medical facility or person’s home. This is a great way to connect with people in your town who are managing similar issues, make new friends and discuss local resources to help make life better. Here’s a peek at one of the Siouxland Celiac Support Group meetings!
- Online support groups: If you live in a rural community, are unable to travel away from your home or find it easier to communicate in a passive way, there are several support groups online. I like to join Facebook groups specific to my health conditions to toss ideas around with people who live the same challenges as me. A quick Facebook search of your medical condition or symptoms will turn up pages, groups and posts that are helpful.
- Start a blog: Well, I have to suggest this option, because it’s what works for me! I’ve written and managed a lifestyle blog since 2010, a year after my rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis. Over the past eight years I’ve met so many wonderful people both in-person and online thanks to this little piece of the Internet. I often chat with others who echo my same challenges and concerns when I post about my health journey on this blog, Instagram and Twitter.
- From within: Sometimes we become too dependent on those around us when really, we need to learn into our experiences. Over the past few years I’ve discovered an immense calming and enlightening by being honest with myself about what I’m feeling and going through. It’s not easy, but it helps you grow, understand and accept whatever is thrown your way. This introspection is available through meditation, contemplation, self-reflection writing or journaling, talking with a therapist or embracing your spirituality.
Never underestimate the healing power of receiving love and compassion from those around you. And, yourself.
Until next time,
PS: Do you hang out on Twitter? Let’s connect!
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