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Vowing to Love Myself in Sickness and in Health

When I hear the words “in sickness and in health”, I think of marriage vows. It is the commitment that two people make to each other when they vow to spend the rest of their lives together. It’s about caring for and not abandoning our loved one when they become ill. I made this commitment to the love of my life when we were both young and healthy. But there was someone else I needed to make that commitment to…….ME! There was a time when the anger from the pain that psoriatic arthritis and my other chronic illnesses inflicted upon my body caused me to hate myself. That’s right; I didn’t just despise my life, I wanted to divorce my body.

Not what I expected

I didn’t expect to be sick. I surely didn’t expect to experience physical pain on a daily basis at such a young age. Pain and mobility issues were the last things I thought I would have to deal with until I was at least 70. The thought of having to use a rollator or wheelchair in my thirties was absurd, yet it was what I had to do. I expected childbirth to be painful, but not holding or hugging my children. I figured my days would be spent caring for my family, running the kids to their activities, volunteering or helping friends and family, not sitting in doctor’s offices or emergency rooms.

A new view

Thinking about how my husband stood by and cared for me the best he could during my darkest and most painful moments is what made me stop hating myself. He kept his vow, no matter how tough it got. And believe me, there have been some ugly moments. I then thought about how I would have reacted had it been him who had become chronically ill. Would I have left him? No, I would have stood by his side and cared for him the best that I could. Then it hit me if I were willing to do that for him, shouldn’t I be willing to do the same for myself?

Making a vow

Done wanting to divorce my body, I made a vow to love and care for myself no matter how sick I get. I started by making better choices in regards to what I eat and drink, listening to my body, giving it what it needs, and not pushing myself to the point of exasperating my symptoms. I vowed to enjoy the good times and to fight my way through the tough ones. Over time, these and other changes that I made to how I treat my pain has made living with my chronic illnesses easier. Not just for me, but for my husband too. The more I work on improving the areas of my health that I do have control over, the more time my husband and I have to do the things we want to do. I may not always like my body, but I will always love it.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Psoriatic-Arthritis.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

  • kanmore1
    7 months ago

    Love this!

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