Navigating the Holidays with a Chronic Illness

We’re officially in the holiday season around these parts (see the first gift guide of the year) and now it’s on to navigating the holidays with a chronic illness. Your life is hard enough, and the holidays are fraught with even more difficult moments. Hopefully I’ll can help make them a little bit easier!

Surviving the Holidays with a Chronic Illness

Problem: Your family doesn’t understand certain elements of your life that are due to your illness, such as regular fatigue, inability to work full-time, etc. and you’re worried that they’re going to bring it up.

Solution: Prepare a quick answer that you can give if they bring it up.

Answering questions about being chronically ill | Is chronic illness a disability?

Problem: You’re not sure how you’re going to make it through holiday activities, like Thanksgiving dinner or Christmas Eve mass.

Solution: Plan your time wisely! Maybe you, like me, generally don’t feel well at the end of the day. So rest up and don’t use much energy earlier in the day.

Hacks for living with chronic conditions

Problem: How are you going to find the time to shop for holiday gifts?

Solution: Plan ahead! Schedule time to shop, know what you’re looking for, and research where you can find it to eliminate wandering around from store to store. And, if at all possible, shop online!

Problem: Traveling is very difficult because of your health, but you need to anyway.

Solution: I have so many suggestions for you! Here’s a whole post on how to travel with arthritis, which is really applicable to anyone flying with a chronic illness.

4 questions to ask before traveling with chronic health problems |

Like this post? Check out:

Chronic Illness and Mental Health, Chronically Ill Tips: Preparing for Medical Appointments, A Guide to Chronic Illness for Those Who Don’t Have One

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  • Reply Darianne

    I am a diabetic, so this post hits close to home. Thanksgiving is like the holiday I love and hate because I know I shouldn’t eat much of certain foods but I really want to. I get questioned a lot. I’ve learned to deal though!

    November 23, 2015 at 2:41 am
    • Reply Kate Mitchell

      Good for you! I can imagine that’s difficult. I hope you had a good Thanksgiving!

      December 8, 2015 at 12:48 pm
  • Reply Maureen

    On top of having fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue and an extreme case of TMJ,I also have DVT. I am a caretaker for older parents. So I am constantly pushing myself. I try now to complain because there are others who are in the same situation. I do not want to bring attention to myself and the issues that I am dealing with.

    November 23, 2015 at 11:34 am
    • Reply Kate Mitchell

      Good luck getting through the holidays, then!

      December 8, 2015 at 12:48 pm
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