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Every day that I live and breath, I fight an invisible battle with my chronic condition. Most of the time this is an invisible battle but make no mistake, it rages inside of me assaulting me without mercy some days and planning its next attack others.

While its weapons might be all manner of relentless pain, I am not powerless. I have my own ammunition and I am willing to fight. I eagerly engage in battle daily because even though my life is forever altered by this disease, I will never wave the white flag surrendering my quality of life.

My arsenal is vast.

I stare down my enemy with the power of acceptance. I evade its advance by taking my medications as prescribed. I dodge its attack by eating a healthy diet and exercising even as my legs cramp and my lungs burn for air. I prepare for its advance by getting enough sleep and rest when fatigue charges at me.

My secret weapon against this enemy is the illusion of disguise. I fool my disease by looking good even when I feel lousy. I avoid sweatpants, wear makeup and do my hair.

When the enemy begins to gain the upper hand, I change my attitude. I write a gratitude list and suddenly the tables turn.

This may be a war and I don’t know who will win in the long run but hope is a strong ally of mine and joins the battle when my reserves are low.

In fact, I have many allies in this combat: love, perspective, appreciation, awareness, happiness and peace. All of them help me beat back my enemy as we take the fight to the front lines.

I am not willing to concede. I will hold my position and I will rework my battle plans in order to keep my enemy at bay.