Those with chronic illnesses can be plagued with self doubt.
I believe myself to be a person with great self confidence. It was a long journey to arrive at this destination, but once I arrived I knew I was here. I realize that chronic illness doesn’t only affect us physically, it manifests in other ways, too. There are psychological, mental and emotional aspects to illness. Congenital heart disease taught me that long ago. Multiple sclerosis continues to remind me.
I was talking to my dear friend. She had posted some photos of me and I did not like any of them. I thought they were taken too close and they were unflattering. I asked her to remove them and she did. She and I proceeded to have a discussion regarding this issue. She told me how she felt I am too hard on myself. She said that I cannot see myself the way others see me. She then suggested I write about this subject figuring there are many people who may have these same feelings and bouts of insecurity.
I assured my friend that my current state of mind is temporary and I will get through this valley. I told her I had been in this same place — feeling inadequate — throughout my life. A young person transitioning into adulthood is a difficult process. It is additionally arduous when an illness is present. I often felt as if I was “damaged.” I felt different and lacked the maturity to embrace my differences as attributes. I was not capable at that time to walk in the knowledge that I had been set apart. It took me years to comprehend this stage in my life. It required a lot of tears, heartache, introspection and most important, self-acceptance. I thought I had conquered that covetous enemy.
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