How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers

I'm not a Buddhist. I won't be converting. I found this book on a recommended reading list for people with celiac disease. And I couldn't have read this at a better time. Having struggled especially over the last 4 months, missing so much work, missing out on events with friends and family and at Church, you just get tired of missing things. I just wish I had control over my health. But oh well. It's not in the cards right now.

This was a great book that gives a number a great ideas of how to handle different situations you experience when sick, all the time. I'm fortunate to not have the illness of the author, though some days it feels as though I do. But I am tired of being defined by my disease. For years, I was tired of being defined by my job, then by my car accident, then again by my job and now by celiac disease. Running gets thrown in there too. But right now, running isn't really possible with my health. It's probably part of what has drawn me into myself and not wanting to talk when around others - there isn't really anything to talk about, at least nothing that seems to interest anyone. And I don't like talking about being sick, I don't want to be identified as the sickee. I prefer to talk about other people, so I just ask questions, instead of answering them. This book didn't necessarily how to address that issue, but many others. So, I'm working on how to compliment what she recommends. Unfortunately just last night I had  bad night, as in pain level = 10. So fun. And today I missed a huge family event because of it.  But earlier today, as I was thinking about how I wasn't going to be able to attend, I was able to think of the book, and the author, and though I am sad to miss out on seeing so many family members, I knew that it would be OK, that it didn't mean I was a bad person, and I wasn't slacking in not attending a family event, that I'm not offending the family members today's event is for. I need to take care of myself.  Pushing myself too far may be part of why I am going through these troubles right now. I'm not one to do stuff for myself, to focus on me. But maybe I need to sometimes. My body just needs more rest. The author helps you understand that it is OK.

I sort of skipped sections when she got too much into the Buddhist philosophy because I either didn't understand or it didn't interest me. But if you have a chronic illness,  you know someone with a chronic illness, or maybe you just have chronic struggles, this is a great book to read.


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