How to Run a Lifestyle Site When Your Lifestyle is Chronic Illness
This is a very difficult post for me to write, as it means sharing something that I have kept largely private for a very long time. However, I don’t want to feel dishonest when I’m creating content, so that means sharing something that I normally try to hide.
I was first diagnosed with a chronic illness (endometriosis) almost 15 years ago, and a few months ago I was diagnosed with my second. When I left my job last summer to begin writing full time, I expected that the symptoms I had struggled with for a few years were due to stress, and that my health would improve and the ailments would lessen. Instead, my health continued to decline. Now I spend the majority of my day trying to fulfill a list of tasks to keep my pain in check: taking fistfuls of supplements, wrapping my body in heating pads, walking slowly around the neighborhood, writing down the new afflictions for that day. I have days when I can’t get out of bed, and days when my brain fog means I can’t remember what I’m supposed to be doing if I could.
I thought this site would become a place where I could curate fashion I loved, beauty I was trying, and places I’d been. That hasn’t necessarily changed, but my wardrobe is filled with much more loungewear, I haven’t bothered with mascara in months, and trips are less frequent now that any disruption to my routine is agonizing. I’m having to reconcile my reality with the plans I had, and learning how to do that can be difficult. I feel that I’ve been lying by omission; I don’t want anyone to think that I’m not sick when I’m not just lying in bed all day, or that I can’t still love fashion when I’m wearing sweats for a week.
So, changes. I’m still posting about beauty, but I’m using all “clean” and non-toxic products because I can’t risk any endocrine disruptors. My style is becoming more streetwear, which happily lets me stay comfortable without feeling frumpy. I’m excited to share with everyone what I love and what is working for me. I’m also going to try to be honest about what I’m experiencing in the hope of education and outreach.
Thank you for reading and supporting this site, which allows me to share the things that I love.