What It Means to Thrive with Invisible Illness

January 9, 2017 By

How to Thrive with an Invisible Illness

It’s become popular to use the word invisible when we are referring to chronic diseases—diseases where people are not well but they look well on the outside.

Invisible is such an interesting word to use in terms of illness. Think about the superpower you wish you had when you were younger. It was likely either flying or invisibility. We wanted to be invisible so that we could go where we wanted and spy on people without them knowing we are there.

In reality, being unseen, unheard, and invisible can be an extremely painful and discouraging experience. Never again would I list invisibility on my choices of a superpower.

To some degree, we all are walking around with some invisible illness, because we are essentially in some degree of imbalance.

I agree with this wholeheartedly. I’m wondering where you stand on the idea. Do you think we are all in some degree of imbalance? I suppose it depends in part what you think balance looks like and if there is a standard for everyone. For me, balance includes:

  • sufficient healthy sleep for optimal energy levels
  • undisturbed sleep cycles
  • clear skin
  • sharp vision
  • no aches or pains, including headaches
  • easy and frequent elimination
  • balanced energy levels throughout the day
  • waking with energy and enthusiasm
  • ideal weight and muscle tone for your body type and shape
  • high level of activity throughout the day to maintain muscle tone and heart health

Shall I continue? You know I could. I have to say that I don’t know if I know anyone who is without some degree of imbalance somewhere in their life. Whether due to genetics, external trauma, or diet and lifestyle habits and choices.

If we’re all out of balance, how do we save ourselves and those we love? How do we work within a system that is not designed or interested in preventing the small aches and pains we accept as normal aging?

Natural forms of medicine urge us to look at illness, pain and imbalance in a different way. Looking at imbalance, pain, illness as a message from the body tells us a different story about how to treat it.

I know for certain that becoming your own advocate is absolutely essential to your health and well-being. If you are blessed to have another advocate in your life, all the better, but they cannot be the only one.


  • You must continue to search on your own for answers.
  • You must continue to ask questions, not only of others but of yourself.
  • You must start listening to your body and the messages it is trying to tell you.

Train your ear to your body signals and messages. Listen attentively and closely and you will begin to decipher the knowledge you need to make daily incremental changes for the better.

Sometimes challenges are part of our life’s path. They allow us to grow in ways we wouldn’t have otherwise.

I’ve lived enough years to know that we rarely change when we are comfortable. Until life hands us lemons and we are given the choice of starving or making lemonade, it comes down to a decision. What will you do with what you have been given? However unfair, unjust or unkind your experience, your path, the illness, the symptoms, what will you do now?

I consider us all healers. If we start to investigate how our body functions and who we are, and what are the things that drive us further away from balance and we start to minimize those, and what are the things that draw us closer to balance and we start to maximize those, then we are healers. It’s very empowering to think of ourselves that way. – Mary-Alice Quinn

5 Comments on "What It Means to Thrive with Invisible Illness"

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