IBD Alone

I hate winter. It’s dead. It’s cold. It’s hard. My emotions always seem to follow suit. Especially after the holidays, which seem to have a comfort & joy sensation. This January has been a tougher one. Not only do I just hate winter, but I’ve been dealing with my IBD and I feel alone. Utterly alone.

When you have an IBD, you often feel misunderstood. On the outside, I look ‘normal’. I ‘look’ healthy. On the inside, I hurt. I am scared. And I’m tired of fighting. Many times I have felt judged, and sometimes by those who have felt like they should be closest to me. I don’t ‘look’ like I should feel fatigued, they think I’m lazy. I don’t ‘look’ like I’m ‘sick’, I shouldn’t have backed out of that commitment. This IBD, especially when it is active as mine is, is no joke. You feel like things are out of control and there’s nothing you can do about it. You feel as though you’re constantly letting someone down. People do end up backing away. They no longer reach out to you about getting together or even seeing how you are. They don’t understand. This is a daily, lifelong, chronic battle. Each day could bear something different than the last. I pray for the day I could possibly go into remission and this 5+ year battle comes to a close, even if just for a while. Maybe then the feeling of isolation will somewhat dissipate. I can actually be everyone’s standard of ‘normal’ again…

Through this battle, I have done some life and self examination. The feeling ‘alone’ always pops up. Quietly, inwardly alone (and that’s hard on the soul). Especially, when I have felt overly exposed by Him. I’m sure it would surprise many that I battle this ‘alone’ insecurity (I can come off fairly social), but the insecurity is almost always there. Sometimes it’s covered up pretty well and even I overlook it, but it’s usually not gone for long before it’s there again.

It’s my exposed ugly place that He’s had me working on. It’s been my focus for quite some time now. I’ve made strides and feel somewhat more content, but when there are setbacks it’s hard not to focus on that and keep moving forward. One setback does not define you. I pray this Psalm (a lot) 16:8 when I feel ‘alone’ creeping back in, “I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.”

Over the last year, I’ve been trying to learn how to see the ‘blessings in disguise’ – those life lessons from this journey I’m on. One of the biggest blessings is I cherish the good days all that much more. My smile is brighter. My laugh is heartier. My energy soars. I know the good days are truly something special and worth every ounce to fully live in them. I don’t take them for granted. Another thing I’ve learned is I love a little harder. My love is fierce for those who stay closest to me. We are not promised tomorrow. Through this challenge I pray daily that God continues to reveal moments of wisdom. I need them.

So winter stinks. But there is one thing that winter is not – it is not ugly. Oddly, I find such beauty in the nature of winter. It’s flat out stunning sometimes. It can do things no other season can. It can sparkle with ice. It can bring a crispness to lungs when inhaled. It can drop white beauty from the sky. And when the sun shines on a cold winter day it seems to shine so much brighter. I try to remember this when it feels like ‘winter’ sneaks into my life no matter what the actual season may be. Beauty is there, in the broken-ness. I am not alone. One day, whether in this life or the next, I will make peace with this and all its ‘blessings’ will be revealed. But I wouldn’t be human if I didn’t admit that I will continue to pray with steadfast hope that it will happen while I’m still here on this side of heaven 😉

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8 thoughts on “IBD Alone”

  1. I wish I could take this burden from you and heal you myself. You are not alone, but I know you know this. I love you friend and hope and pray you will see remission soon.

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    1. It’s hard not to feel truly alone sometimes. IBD messes with you in all ways possible. Working on trying to remind myself I’m really not alone. There are people who do care and the One who made me will always be there ❤

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  2. I am proud of you, Carrie, as you continue to explore information, select ideas along with you doctors, try these ideas, then evaluate what is best for YOU! You are communicating your feelings with others who might also suffer from this problem. Together with the love of God, family, and friends…a solution to ease the pain and dispense of this affliction can happen. I love you and want you to know that you are NOT alone! I pray that you feel all the LOVE surrounding you.❤️Mom

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    1. Always one of my biggest supporters. I’m working hard to not let isolation set in. I’m emotionally exhausted. Thank you for always caring and always showing you care. I thank God for YOU ❤

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  3. FAITH – God is the creator and foundation of my life, of all life.

    I take a time of silence now. I exhale, close my eyes, and imagine myself in a peaceful setting — one of my choosing that is pleasant and relaxing. In the stillness, I share these thoughts in prayer:

    “God, I have faith in You. In every place, in every experience, in every decision, in every circumstance, You are present. As surely as I know that morning comes after night, I know that You are the one power and presence. And You are the one source of all wisdom and understanding. When, of myself, I cannot see a way for peace or prosperity or healing, I know You show me the highest and best way. You are guidance, wisdom, and strength. In the quiet, I give thanks that whether there is consistency or change, You are the unshakable creator, the foundation of all life.” from DailyWord.com

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  4. Carrie, I just stumbled across this post and I want to let you know I hope this pain and disease goes away as fast at it probably came. I was diagnosed with celiac disease in high school because I had the constant diarrhea, weight loss, pain, fatigue. Turns out I was misdiagnosed and science has come a long way since then, but I was very sick and it sucked. Lucky for me, I was not as sick as you are but I do remember the alone feeing you describe. Someone actually once asked me if maybe it was all in my head. Really? Weight loss and diarrhea! Nah. I did heal though after several years and I have not had the same issues since. I hope this gives you a little hope that one day you will feel better! You are strong and I know you have got this!!! Take care!

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