Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Saying that having IC is tough is, for many, an understatement and not anything those of us with IC don’t already know. But what to do about that? We all have our own unique individual challenges with our IC and for many, associated conditions. Sometimes we do a good job of managing our emotions, coping with each challenge that is thrown our way. Other times, we feel overwhelmed by everything we are dealing with and don’t know what to do about the sadness, frustration and even anger we are feeling.

I have felt this way lately. Having to have surgery, fighting chronic UTI’s and never getting even a small break has really begun to challenge my coping skills. It seems as though as I can actually “feel” that I am fighting to stay in control and not sink into these negative feelings.

I am so glad I had an appointment with my psychologist yesterday. The timing was perfect as I was able to discuss my latest struggles and problem solve how to cope with these feelings. So, for me, the number one important thing I have to help me is working with my psychologist. If you are really struggling with how to cope with all we have to deal with, I strongly suggest finding a good psychologist to help you navigate the mine field of emotions we all go through. It has been life changing for me.

The other thing I try to do is distract myself with things that make me happy even if it’s hard. The other day I was feeling down and my Mom was downstairs putting up our Christmas decorations.  I wasn’t feeling in the mood, but I told myself to get off my tired butt and go downstairs and at least do something.  Mom had Christmas music playing and slowly but surely, my mood began to change and I started to enjoy what we were doing. I couldn’t do as much as I’ve done in previous years but I did help and it had the desired effect; I felt happier and in better spirits and had been distracted enough that I stopped myself from wallowing in self-pity. It was so good for my soul to get in the Christmas spirit and work with my Mom and I’m so glad I forced myself to do it.

Yesterday, after my instillation and psychologist appointments, my Mom took me to lunch to cheer me up. It was a good time, as I had just had an instillation, so I had some relief for a little while, so we could relax and have a nice lunch together.

Another thing I did when I got home was to pick up the phone and call one of my best gal pals and have a nice chat. She is so patient and understanding about my IC and always wants to know what’s going on, and it was good to be able to talk to her about how tough it’s been lately. But I TRY not to make those phone calls all about me, so we talked about her Thanksgiving and all sorts of other topics. Again, it was good for my spirits and made a big difference in how I was feeling.

Today, while these latest challenges are ever present, I feel better about handling them. Taking advantage of all the resources I have has made a big difference in my coping abilities.

It can be very easy to let ourselves get overwhelmed by these emotions as we struggle with all the challenges we face. But if you put your mind to it, refuse to let yourself be taken down, use every single resource you have to help, you just may find that you are able to pull yourself out of allowing the negative to overtake you.  I know that it isn’t always easy. I feel it has been more difficult for me lately but I made sure to talk about this with my therapist and put all that I have learned into action to help myself through this tough time. 

The Corrs - Everybody Hurts

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