Saw this the other day and it REALLY spoke to me. Unfortunately, fibromyalgia has become a big part of my life. For you, it may be something else or fibromyalgia in addition to other illnesses. These things can have significant impacts on our lives. I say fibromyalgia turned my world upside down as I knew it. It’s hard to deal with. The doctors haven’t told me much about it. What I’ve learned is from my own research and talking to others that have it. Although, for me, it seems that talking about it online vs in real life face to face interactions is much different. I don’t know why, but that has been my experience. I’m trying to figure that one out still. Anyways, if affects so many areas of your life, it’s ridiculously insane. I mean there’s pain. Pain all over, moving; several different kinds of pain. Normal things that shouldn’t hurt, do. There’s the sleep and fatigue issues. Rest well. Tired. Don’t rest well, feel even worse. And tired? Shoot! Try relentless, overwhelming fatigue that makes lifting your head up difficult. Then, add on things like IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), RLS (Restless Leg Syndrome), migraines, sensory overload, and other things that often come with fibromyalgia. Oh, did I mention increased depression and anxiety? Yeah. Not fun. The doctors are perplexed by it and don’t really know why it happens. Many patients have adverse side effects from the medications they use to treat it. Oh, and, tell me how you would feel if a doctor told you that there’s not much more they can do for you? So yeah. Everyday is a battle, a struggle, a fight. Imagine going to battle every single day. You’d be tired and weary. And, let’s imagine you had no training. You were just thrown in to fight. I’m trying to beat this monster with all I have and with the skills I know. These are my truths now. I don’t like it, but they are my truths. And, I love this quote because it says what I’ve been thinking. These are my truths and these things are big parts of me now. I don’t like them, no. But, I’m not afraid of my truths and to talk about them. I’m not afraid just because you may be afraid to think about chronic illness or, perhaps, your own mortality. And, finally, I’ll not omit pieces of me, including my illness, to make you comfortable. Instead, why don’t you tell me what makes you uncomfortable in such a way that’s not attacking me or belittling me, and we can address it? Open up the conversation and we can talk about it. I’ve had to face my mortality already. Perhaps, I can help you face yours. This is life and, sometimes, we get sick. Sometimes, we get chronically sick. Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way, trying to dismiss how challenging these things are, but if we addressed them, they might not be so scary. Maybe, just maybe, if we had more conversations opened up about these things, we’d all feel a little better. And, by that, I mean conversations of respect, kindness, and honesty. But, if you wish for me to omit pieces of me, you’ve got the wrong expectations of me. Fibromyalgia and chronic pain and fatigue have become a huge part of my life and almost everything is planned around that. Please try to be understanding of that. If you cannot be, then, please be quiet. If you cannot do that, then there are tough choices ahead that I’ll have to make. But, I do not deserve to be treated poorly because you have a misunderstanding of what chronic illness does to a person and their lives.