Day 4: I write about my health because…
Reflect on why you write about your health for 15-20 minutes without stopping.
There have already been volumes written about why people write about their health and why it's helpful to do so. I have personally written volumes about it, and also about blogging about our illnesses.
In 2007 I spoke on a radio program for National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week (NICIAW) titled Blogging About Your Illness. I had so much to say on the subject that I also created a series of blog posts of the same title, divided into Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.
In 2010 the folks at NICIAW asked me to re-visit the subject, so I did. This time I called the two part series The Mechanics of Blogging About an Illness: An Update, and Blogging About Illness Update: Why We Do It and What's New About It.
As you can see, I HAVE studied and written volumes about writing and blogging about illness. Scattered throughout are bits and pieces of the answer to today's prompt about why I write about my health. So now I'm going to set the timer and put it all together with whatever else comes out.
I have always written when I get upset. In my pre-illness days that meant I only wrote when I was unhappy. It's an effective outlet for me that allows me to organize and analyze my thoughts in a productive way that I'm not able to do if the thoughts are just left to whirl around in my mind.
I guess I started writing on this blog about my illness in 2007 because I wasn't able to work at a "real" job, writing on the blog made me feel like I was doing something worthwhile, and I could do it from my recliner. And it was free!
I started out blogging with the hope that my friends and family would read my posts and it would open the door to discussion between us about these subjects that I find hard to talk about in person. Hasn't happened. Either my friends and family don't read what I write or they're not interested in talking about it. What has happened is I've got a whole new set of friends that I've mostly only met virtually in the blog world, but who I feel like I know and am close to because we have chronic illness and writing about it in common.
I found from my research for the other posts I've written about writing/blogging about illness that writing is a form of art for me, and art is healing. That's been proven scientifically. So it feels good and that's a big reason why I do it.
Also from previous research I've found that my blog is a quest narrative. Quest narratives are about finding that insight as illness is transformed into a means for the ill person to become someone new. That's where I'm headed now. Hopefully I will write more about where this is going is future posts this month.