Following on from yesterday’s inspiring post, are some more words of wisdom from the courageous Emma Atack.
As a little follow up to every ‘your secrets’ story, I ask everyone who takes part to share a few tips with us all. After all, what better way is there to learn, than from someone who has already been there and got the T-shirt?!
I’d also like to take a wee moment to say a huge thank you to everyone who has got in touch about Emma’s story. The response, as always with this blog series, has been supportive, encouraging and positive and I’m not lying when I say that it really does warm my cockles. Especially when I receive tweets like the ones below. Lovely readers, you are awesome! x
From @mummymode: “as an endometriosis sufferer I feel your pain and am inspired by you! Wonderful read xx”
From @CoutureSoul: “Well done Emma – big move for you doing that! Always there when i need you – Friends for life xx”
From @raredisease001: “so inspirational! With an unstoppable child with a rare disease; I believe we are only given as much as we can cope with.”
Emma’s tips on dealing with illness and finding the sunshine through the rain!
- Be kind to yourself and take care of your body. Respect it – think nutrition and allow yourself to rest.
- Don’t judge others. Remember the majority of disabilities we are unable to see and it’s not a competition. I remember following surgery asking a woman working in a shop to pass me a newspaper from the bottom shelf. She tutted and I felt obliged to justify myself why I had asked. She responded ‘well you think you’ve got a bad back, mine is terrible’. I just burst into tears.
- Mental health is exactly that – mental health. If you are offered help it does not mean you are weak, it simply means that your mind is poorly, just like other parts of your body get ill. I regularly see a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist at the pain clinic and have learnt just how powerful the human mind is.
- Grief is not only when someone dies, it relates to ‘loss’. In my case the loss of my old life.
- Tablets have a time, a place and usually side-effects. Of course take them if you really need to, but for me I’ve had enough of taking pain killers. I’ve gone on to find that acupuncture works wonders for me, as does keeping stress at bay and moving around. Going for a walk is the best medicine.
- Remember you don’t see people on their worst days as they are usually unable to leave the house!
- Try not to moan about work. Trust me work gives a person a sense of purpose, something to get up for in the morning. It may sound good the thought of not working but the reality is very different.
- When the chips are down, remember you really learn who your true friends are. In my case I learnt that I have the most amazing husband. We really have tried and tested the vows ‘in sickness and in health’.
Again, I’d like to say a big thank you to Emma for sharing her story with us on Pouting In Heels. It’s certainly made me realise how lucky I am to be healthy and pain free and also how I really need to start valuing and looking after my body more, to help ensure I stay this way.
What have you learned from Emma? Have you got anything to share which could help Emma or others suffering from chronic pain?
Till the next time, always look for that glimmer of sunlight!