I don’t know about you but I love reading about other people’s experiences with chronic illness. I feel that there is so much that we can learn from one another. I was therefore really excited to get my hands on a copy of Positivity in Pain by Jennifer Corter.
Jennifer suffers from multiple chronic illnesses including endometriosis, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. In her book, Jennifer shares her story of being diagnosed as a teenager, the struggles she faced and how she kick-started her healing journey. Her aim is to help other to change how they view life with chronic illness.
How Jennifer faced the difficulties of living with chronic illness
Like many people with chronic illness, Jennifer became incredibly depressed and found herself in a dark place. She got stuck in a constant cycle of doctor visits, medications and therapy sessions. This went on for many years before Jennifer realised the reason why nothing was changing about her situation; it was because she wasn’t actively doing anything to change it.
Like most of us, she hoped someone else would fix her or find the answers. That didn’t happen and Jennifer came to the realisation that it was down to her to work to change her situation. She began blogging and set out to kick chronic pain’s ass.
The introduction of Positivity in Pain
The book begins by explaining the issues those of us who experience chronic pain face. It’s completely honest, relatable and summarises our struggles well. I found parts a little repetitive but it’s clear the author is speaking from personal experience and understands the difficulties of chronic illness first hand.
We are then introduced to the concept of optimistic realism, which is the theme that underpins the entire book. It’s one I can relate to as I feel it’s how I try to see the world. It’s about accepting where we are at the present moment but holding onto the hope that things may get better for us.
Jennifer explains the concept of choice; we can’t choose what has happened to us but we can choose how we handle it. I totally agree with the author’s viewpoint on this. Jennifer challenges the reader to try and see their situation through different lenses.
The book is relatable
Throughout the chapters, we are presented with relatable thoughts and experiences. Though I sometimes felt the author jumped around a little, her frank advice is designed to get you thinking. As a reader, you are challenged to find new ways to cope with your issues and given some tools to help you do just that. I felt some areas could have gone into more depth. However, as so many facets of life with chronic illness are explored, it would no doubt be difficult to delve too deep.
Worth a read
If you are finding that you are not coping mentally and that you want to change how you feel about life, I would say to give this book a go. I imagine there will be people out there who aren’t ready to hear Jennifer’s words. But, I believe what she says is true and key to living as well as possible with chronic illness. You can order a copy of Positivity in Pain by Jennifer Corter from Amazon.
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