Staying positive through illness

3 Oct 2010

How can we stay positive through illness? It’s not impossible, but through time, patience and understanding I believe it can be achieved,  but it is fundamental that we understand and do something about our day-to-day stressors.

Once we have identified our stressors, we can bring about change, so that we begin to cope with whatever we have to deal with, including illness. Ultimately we have to find ways to cope, not only to help ourselves, but also to help our family cope with what we deal with, so that they can help us back.

By talking about our physical problems, we unravel stress. By unraveling stress, we cope emotionally. Once we cope emotionally, we can go about making those changes. There’s no point writing down stressors and doing nothing about them!

Are your stressors financially driven? Would it be better moving into a smaller house so that financial worries are reduced? We have to ask ourselves the questions that will help us identify our stress. So now we know what they may be, we can go about changing them.

We need to look at ways of enhancing our lives. Perhaps take up a hobby; reduce work hours so that we spend more time with our family. Go for walks. How many of us equate our own mortality through an illness of a loved one? I know I did, but I also know that given what my life had been, I’m not sure I could have changed anything. I would have had to be someone else.

In my own case, when my mother was ill, I sat with her when a thought came into my mind that, that could be me in 15 to 20 years. At the time I didn’t know I had CP, but it opened my eyes to what I needed to do to find out about what I had been dealing with. I had been living with not knowing for 46 years, now it was time to change all of that. My mum’s illness helped me.

4 Responses to “Staying positive through illness”

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  1. Lisa Cyr 03. Oct, 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    I try to stay positive. I also encourage others to be positive. I try not to let things get to me but sometimes it’s hard, especially when I’m in pain and can’t do anything about it, when nothing works or helps.

    I usually push through it by doing something that gets my mind off of it. Am I making sense? And there are days when I’ve got to a tolerable level and others bring me back down. It’s like they know and say “okay how can I make her feel bad?”

    Going through my mother’s battle with cancer brings some perspective to light. I too think that could be me in 10 to 20 years or sooner, if I don’t start living and doing better. I get so down at times because of my problems, usually the lack of energy. But then I think I could be worse off. I could be in bed and not able to do anything.

    • Ilana 03. Oct, 2010 at 12:58 pm #

      Lisa you do make sense, but where you say you reach a tolerable level, maybe you’re not quite there, because people bring you down so easily without having to try. Take stock of those who bring you down. I did and I have never been happier.

      Living with someone who is terminally ill, does make us see our own mortality, but whilst we see it we also have to make those changes so that we live a more positive, productive life while we have our health. You have answered a lot of your own thoughts. You know what changes you need to make, take your first steps to work through those. Feel better soon.

  2. Randy Darling 03. Oct, 2010 at 1:34 pm #

    When my mother was ill, she enjoyed sitting on a swing my brother had bought her in the summer. I used to sit with her and I realize now how special those times were. Quiet times just her and me.

    Thankfully she was able to enjoy the summer before the end came. We were all thankful for that. With my mother’s illness I always thought as long as there was life there was hope.

    We had her for longer than the doctors said. In the end it was pain free for her, which is the way my father and I wanted her to go.

    • Ilana 03. Oct, 2010 at 1:50 pm #

      Randy, I’m sure your mother will know of those special times she had with you, as you have of those memories now. I am sure they will have helped her work through her illness.

      I know my mother was very positive around people who were positive. Positivity helped her fight another day. She stayed positive and focused far longer than the doctors told her she would.

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