‘When Bodies Break’: 32-Real-Life Stories of Living with Chronic Illness

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When you develop scary, debilitating symptoms, how does this affect your everyday life? What happens after doctors tell you you have a chronic illness that won’t go away anytime soon, if it can ever be cured at all?

In ‘When Bodies Break’, Cameron B. Auxer has collected 32 real-life accounts of what it’s like to survive and thrive with chronic illness. Part memoir, part informational, chronically ill contributors from all backgrounds have literally poured their blood, sweat and tears into sharing their experiences and best advice.

The first part of the book features the background story of each contributor. From living with a rare disease that’s caused multiple heart attacks within 8 days (!) to losing everything that’s important to a person – work, money, friends and passions – the personal stories are honest, raw and sometimes heartbreakingly painful.

But despite the suffering shared, there’s an underlying sense of resilience and hope that shines through. As different as the accounts are, they all have one thing in common: every one’s dug deep to create a new, rich and purposeful life despite the limitations of chronic illness.

In the second part of ‘When Bodies Break’, Auxer has gathered helpful advice about specific aspects of living with chronic illness. You’ll read tried-and-tested tips on how to deal with your diagnosis, navigate the medical system and become your own advocate. The book reminds us that self-care isn’t selfish, but a necessity. It even covers practical problems like making grocery-shopping less painful and 15-minute power plays for chronically ill parents. Thanks to the personal notes of the contributors, the advice given feels relatable and realistic.

‘When Bodies Break’ is the combined wisdom of 32 resilient spoonies sharing the ins and outs of life with chronic illness. Every longterm patient will read the featured stories with a sigh of relief and recognition. The book is also a valuable resource for anyone newly diagnosed looking for tips on how to deal with the rollercoaster of emotions and practical issues.

So if you’re looking for inspiration to learn to accept your limitations, embrace new possibilities and create a joyful life, ‘When Bodies Break’ is just the book for you.

Which book has helped you deal better with chronic illness?

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