IC is Not a Death Sentence: World Suicide Prevention Day

It’s World Suicide Prevention Day & Interstitial Cystitis Awareness Month.

I’m about to get real vulnerable. 

The following is a poem I wrote in 2016, when my IC diagnosis (also known as Painful Bladder Syndrome) ruled over my life…

She smiles on the outside
but inside she is dying
She laughs with her friends 
but lies awake crying.

Her life is over 
Before its begun 
Her spirit is broken –
Disease has won.

She dreams of a life
suffocated not by pain 
To be happy & healthy;
Escape her tormented brain.

She knows she is strong,
Smiling through heartbreak 
But her smile deceives her 
How much more can she take?

The door closed & locked –
She is left alone
Fighting invisible battles 
To her loved ones unknown. 

Debilitating, incurable 
No hope for the future;
Her once promising life
Seems like God’s twisted humor. 

Doubled over in immense sadness,
Hot tears stream down her face 
She lies awake wishing, praying –
For death’s sweet embrace. 

For millions of IC sufferers, suicide may seem like the only way out; the only way to feel relief from debilitating, incurable bladder pain. Every “happy” moment is overpowered by constant pelvic pressure, urethral burning, urinary frequency or retention. 

When this poem was written, I was suffering: Physically & mentally. I was drugged with Valium suppositories that knocked me out for 15+ hours a day. The only time I was not in pain was when I was sleeping.

Now, 4 years later, I am in remission. I still have pain, but the quality of my life is better than I ever thought possible. 

It’s easy to look at my life now & forget – Forget that I am “disabled.” When I read back this poem I wrote at my worst, I am reminded of the severity of my disease & the importance of using my platform to raise awareness; to represent a group that is broken. 

If you are suffering from IC (or any chronic illness, for that matter) & battling intrusive thoughts; compelling voices that tell you to surrender – LISTEN TO ME! The voice is a LIAR. You are stronger than you think. You will get better in time. And you are not alone.

IC is not a death sentence. Fight on ❤

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