I’m just going to say it. I’m so sick of people trying to offer me ways to cure my lupus. Yes. It would be amazing if there were a cure for lupus. It would be the best gift in the world to get rid of this disease in my life. I would love nothing more than to wake up and have no more residual effects from the transverse myelitis. There is nothing I dream of more than to have a day that I can run again and a day that I don’t feel completely exhausted.
But I know that a quick fix is not possible. I know that I have a chronic disease and it isn’t going away because I go on a retreat or I do yoga or I eat vegan or I take a special pill. There is nothing that is going to make this go away and that is what I have to live with. That doesn’t mean that I am broken or less of a person. It simply means that I have to deal with what I’ve been given. That means that I have to learn how to best manage my symptoms and find what is right for me.
I know that people really do mean to be helpful when they offer advice, but it gets tiring. It is hard for people to understand that chronic conditions are mostly not fixable or something that you get over like a cold. We have to deal with a lot of pain and uncertainty in our lives and it feels trivialized when people offer up their “cures” as if we somehow have a choice in the matter and we could heal ourselves if only we cared enough, read the right books, did the right exercise or diet fad, etc…
So next time you are talking to someone about their chronic condition try to remember that we have enough to deal with and offer up a hug instead of fixes. If someone is tired how about staying in for an evening and watching a movie instead of dragging them out? There are a lot of ways to be kind without being condescending.