Social media and a year of blogging

I never used to be one for spending all day on social media, looking at photos, watching videos or just reading about others lives. I was always too busy for it. I was working, rock climbing, hiking, travelling, having coffee with friends or visiting family. I didn’t have time or a want to connect with strangers. I never saw myself blogging or Instagraming that’s for sure. However now social media has become a life line to me.

I started up my blog nearly a year ago, how time flys eh?! I started it as a form of therapy for myself but also to have a way to help those around me understand a little more about M.E. I never thought through blogging I would make friends and connect with an amazing community of people.

M.E/CFS can leave you feeling so alone when you are bed/house bound. It can be days, weeks or months before you hear from a friend. Their lives continue to go on while yours just stands still. It’s not that people don’t care about you, it’s just that they are busy working and living a life while you are not. Even  though you know these facts it doesn’t stop you hurting, feeling left out and worst of all forgotten about. That’s why I am so glad for social media, never thought I’d hear myself say that. I can now connect with other M.E suffers and those with other chronic illnesses who make me realise that I am not alone and don’t have to suffer through this myself. They are there for the late night chats, the early morning encouragements and the afternoon pity partys you throw yourself. They send you silly pictures, write loving letters and best of all want to hear all about how much pain you are in and how much this illness sucks as they know exactly where you are coming from.

Lots of people make fun of me for my love of Instagram which is basically what most 16 year old girls spend their whole days on. When it first started up I didn’t see the point in it at all. I mean why does anyone want to see a picture of my porridge, shoes or new throw pillow. Now I see why it’s so popular. It truly connects you with people from around the world who you normally wouldn’t ever have the opportunity to get to know. Through social media I have come to be part of an amazing community. I have made friendships with people in Australia, Canada, Barcalona and right here in the Uk. I’ve even got to know a lady right here in Lancaster which is very cool.

Within the spoonie community we might not have the same music tastes, like the same hobbies or even speak the same language but we do all have one thing in common and that is how much we care for each other. We are a community that want to make it known to all these who suffer with chronic illness that they are not alone and we are here to love, support and care for each other the best we can. Without social media it would be so much harder for us all to connect and it would be a lot harder for our voices to be heard.

There are so many campaigns and online protests that are run by those with chronic illnesses as we are not well enough to march around with banners and placards. Through these online protests we get to have our voices heard and more understanding brought to our illnesses. #millionsmissing is still running and had 100k mentions on social media. How utterly amazing is that. Round one was so well received and campaigned that there will be a round 2 in September on the 27th.

So to tie this all up I want to say a huge thank you to all of you who I have got to know over the past year. You have shown me so much love and kindness and I can’t thank you all enough for it. Thank you for staying strong even on the worst days and thank you for using your voice and reminding the world that there are #millionsmissing.

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