Ive been thinking a lot about how my relationships have changed since I was diagnosed. It's been over 2years since my 'official' diagnosis, and there's been a noticeable shift in my relationships since. It's been gradual, but becoming more apparent as I settle into my life avec Crohn's.
Some people have made a point of removing themselves from me as time goes on, perhaps because they are uncomfortable in talking about my illness, it makes them feel awkward or they just don't want a 'sick' friend anymore. Or maybe it's just a get out clause after having spent years being trapped listening to my patter. Whatever the reason, its odd.
At first I found this hurtful, now I don't. I feel sorry for people who have difficulty in dealing with someone else being ill.
At the risk of sounding like a bad charity advert, most people at some point in their lives will have to either cope with a serious illness of their own, or deal with a loved one struggling with it.
It's heartbreaking to watch someone you care about decline, it's torture if you love someone and there is absolutely nothing you can do to help. The answer never lies in running away though. It means it's time for you to locate your balls and remember you are now 'on', it's time to step up and show you can be a big comfy blanket for your loved one to rest on when they have spent 5hrs solid throwing up what's left of their insides. Not a nice image is it? No. But you know what's even worse? Being the person doing the throwing up and doing it alone.
Don't get me wrong, this post isn't solely focused on me, I know others who feel like this, times 100.
I am lucky to be surrounded by an amazing man, fantastic family and people who care and make me laugh and help me remember I'm not just "'her with the Crohn's".
This goes for everyone coping with a crohnic illness, mental illness or anything that makes you feel less of yourself; YOU are still in there, a wee bit more 'diseased' than you were before perhaps, but still there.
That's nothing to fear, fear only the wrath of wronging a person constantly fighting a brutal disease daily. You have NO idea what you are dealing with.
And therein lies the problem.