Politically Active with Chronic Illness

I still don’t feel well enough to write about my recent experiences with the Women’s March and my usual diary style musings.  Today, I woke up with such pain in my head and last night was full of symptoms and episodes.  During the last few days, I’ve been trying to follow things politically and I’ve been doing action items from home like contacting my representatives and getting involved online.  However, today the shades are all closed and I can hardly read because everything is so bright and throbby- looks like migraine plus a head cold with sinus pressure on top of my chronic issues.  This is just one of those extra difficult days.

And I think about this battle with my body and how it is keeping me from getting as politically active as I’d like.  I can hardly do anything today and I’ve already collapsed multiple times.  I’m passionate and I want to work for positive change in this world.  And as I become increasingly overwhelmed by my body crying out and by the people crying out around me, instead of falling into despair, I start to find my hope again.

I think about how my body and the health challenges that come with it have taught me an inner discipline that gives me powerful strength.  I am resilience. I am perseverance.  Everyday I take pain, fatigue, and struggles with intermittent consciousness and I make it work.  I focus on living, on adapting, on finding new ways of doing things, on exploring new perspectives.

I can take these tools that have helped me to thrive under extremely challenging situations and apply them to the causes that I care about.  I can be involved politically and I can take time to myself for self care- part of my growing skill set is knowing to put energy into keeping that balanced.  Today I must rest, but this does not mean I am stepping back from working on being part of the amazing political movements right now.  I have the long view.  I am building myself up so that perhaps tomorrow or the day after, I can take action.

I can be politically active with chronic illness.  I empowered.  I have gained many skills that are there for me to use.  I can work towards positive change.  And part of doing that is allowing myself to rest on days like today.


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