When I was in the process of being diagnosed, I felt so alone. None of my other friends had a chronic illness, so I had no one to talk to. I had to start missing things like sleepovers, school events, trips, church outings - the list went on and on. One day I stumbled across someone’s Instagram who had one of the same illnesses as me and I was ecstatic! I had never seen anyone else I could relate to about this stuff. I started to reach out to people and became close with them.
These were the people I could complain about doctors to, rant to, lean on, and go to if I needed some positivity. I honestly don’t know how I would have gotten through all my admissions, surgeries, tube replacements, and ER trips, if it wasn’t for them.
Illnesses are awful but you can form strong bonds over them. I made my best friend because of mine. Having someone to be able to relate to is so important because with a chronic illness, you HAVE to have a good support system to get through the bad times.
It’s also amazing to have someone to celebrate the good times with. If I could go back in time and had the choice to get rid of all my illnesses completely & lose the friendships I’ve made because of them, I wouldn’t. When I finally got to meet my internet best friend, it was like we’d known each other for years. The friends I’ve made on the internet or through Instagram, are people I know I’ll always be able to count on and we will be friends forever.
You can find Emma on her social media @emmarutledge