When I was a child, someone asked me, “What do you want to do when you grow up?” I immediately responded, “I want to save the world.” I couldn’t understand why the adults around me were laughing, I was completely serious!
From birth to age 22, I didn’t know a day without pain. My stomach hurt all the time. It felt as though someone was squeezing my intestines, and I had severe chronic diarrhea. My muscles always ached, my eyes and throat were dry, my nose was so stuffed up, I had to breathe through my mouth all the time. I also struggled to learn and suffered extreme emotional distress.
In 2002, I went to see a naturopathic physician, and he took one look at me and said, “Food is killing you.”
Long story short, I was diagnosed with gluten intolerance and ITP (an autoimmune blood disorder) in 2002. I got into a car accident in 2004 and ended up with a herniated disk in my neck, and I lived with chronic, intermittent pain for many years (still do, only it’s not as bad now). In 2014, I was diagnosed with autism (Asperger’s), TBI (traumatic brain injury), PTSD, and OCD.
No, you would never know any of it to look at me. Yes, I am one of the millions of people living with invisible illness.
That’s why I created this website. In 2010, (way before my cognitive diagnoses), I thought about just how long it had taken me to get my physical diagnoses and how nobody believed me. Nobody. I thought about how many hours I spent researching and figuring out how to eat without making myself sick.
Then, it hit me: “I told you I was sick!”
It was originally going to be the title of a book, but when the idea of a website came to me, I couldn’t let it go. It became my all-encompassing, all-consuming obsession. Since I started this blog, I’ve been reaching out to others with mystery symptoms, chronic illness, and invisible illness.
I’m here because you’re important to me. Yes, you. The person reading this right now! I know exactly what it’s like to not only have no support, but to also be told over and over again that you’re making up your symptoms for attention.
It’s infuriating. It’s terrifying. It’s isolating. It’s wrong.
If it’s happening to you, I understand. This blog is meant to inform and validate you.
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Instagram (More a personal page, but feel free.)