11 Things Ive Learnt From Having A Chronic Illness

If you're new to my blog then I have a chronic illness, well two chronic illnesses. I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/M.E and Fibromyalgia (chronic pain) and I was diagnosed with them 5 years ago but Ive suffered for years before that. What most people don't know is that having a chronic illness changes who you are and theres definitely things I never thought of before I got ill and Ive learnt a lot over the last couple of years and I am still learning.

1. You will lose people in your life.
Not everyone is understanding or compassionate when it comes to invisible illnesses simply because they cant see anything wrong with you. Sometimes that might be someone you are really close with. You definitely find out who your true friends are and who truly cares about you when you have a chronic illness. Thankfully I haven't lost too many people in  my life but I know a lot of people can lose friend groups and thats really sad.

2. Never leave the house with your medication.
I dont know how many times Ive though "Nah, I wont need my medication or painkillers today. Im only going out for a bit." BIG MISTAKE! Every time Ive done that Ive ended up needing painkillers and then Im stuffed.

3. Sleep is your best friend.
Well, when you are able to sleep that is. If I don't get at least 9 hours of sleep then I will definitely suffer the next day and end up sleeping all day.

4. Dont feel bad for saying 'no'.
I am sometimes really hard on myself for turning down plans with my friends and family but its only me that knows my limits and if I know I cant manage to do something I have to say no. I cant count how many times Ive gone out or done something when I wasnt feeling very well and I then ended up suffering the whole time and being house bound for the next few days or even weeks.

5. Heated blankets are life!
I dont know what I would do without my heated blanket. It has been such a lifesaver for me and I use it daily in the autumn and winter months. I also may have used it in the summertime too.. I have a lot of pain as soon as I get cold so a heated blanket (or even a blanket in general) is definitely a necessity.

6. Heating pads are life!
If I could only use 2 things to make living with a chronic illness easier it would be a heated blanket and a heating pad. Sometimes heat is the only thing that will ease pain for me and I tend to get a lot of back, rib and hip pain so a heating pad is ideal to use.

7. I cant plan to do anything in the morning.
I struggle a lot in the morning times and it takes me a while to get up and dressed after getting up so now I will only book things or do things in the late morning or afternoon. Ive never been a morning person but since Ive been ill I am literally the worst morning person probably on the planet and sometimes I need an extra hour or two in bed in the morning to rest.

8. People will judge you.
And thats ok. Its a reflection of that person and not you. I often get funny looks when I have to hold onto my mum when Im out or when I have to use the lift just because I look "fine". This is probably the hardest thing I have to deal with because I hate people watching me and I have definitely turned around and told a few people who would give me weird looks to stop but its something Im really trying not to let me bother me. NOT ALL ILLNESSES ARE VISIBLE PEOPLE!

9. Pacing is key!
I have a more detailed post coming soon all about pacing but basically you have to listen to your body and pace yourself. Pushing yourself when your body is telling you to stop is only going to make you feel worse and will trigger a flare up. I have definitely pushed myself too much over the last few years and its not until this year that Ive really learned to listen to my body. If I need to stop what Im doing and sit down then I will do it.

10. Having a routine is really important.
So I dont really have much of a routine in the morning as that when I am usually at my worse but I have a nighttime routine and I try to stick to it every night to make sure I am able to wind down and relax before bed. My main routine at nighttime is to be in bed ready to sleep by 10.30 at the latest. I always make sure to read or to meditate before that to really relax my body and mind. It makes falling asleep so much easier and I definitely struggle with falling asleep if I dont do this.

11. Always celebrate small victories.
That can be being able to shower that day, being able to cook your own meal from scratch or maybe just changing out of one set of pj's into a clean one. It doesnt matter how big or small something is always be proud of doing it.

What are some things you've learnt from having a Chronic illness?






Photo from Pinterest.


  1. Personally I don't have one but I love posts like this as it gives you a glimpse into what it is like and I think it's so important to share and raise awareness on these things! Wonderful post girl :)

    xx Sofia | SOFIAADOT

  2. It is so lovely to see things from your point of view and learn a little more about you!

    Danielle xx

    1. Thanks. I always worry when I do posts like this that no one will be interested in reading it. So this means a lot xx