Perfect Authentic Me

When Dreams Die Living With Chronic Illness

When I was in my teens I wanted to be a camerawoman in Hollywood. The outtakes I had seen of films made it seem such enormous fun to work on a film set. And how many jobs have so much laughter involved in it?

That dream somehow changed into working in the theatre, so I went to London to learn all about it and create a start in my dream job.

For ten years I had the fortune of working in the West End, The National Theatre and various other theatres abroad. And in all those years there had maybe been a few days where I didn’t feel like working. All the other days I couldn’t wait to go to work.

All that changed when chronic illness came into my life.

Within a year I had so much pain in my body, it was extremely difficult and painful to do my job. And it was clear to me I had to start making changes, for I could not keep doing this work in the future anymore.

17 years on and I have been on many paths looking for answers to have a new life that is fulfilling and joyful. As well as ways to be as well and as healthy as possible.

These paths have taken me on deep inner journeys. Some of which I had thought to have found the answer for what was to be my new life. And some paths of which I realised these were other people’s ideas and not my path at all.

When you live with chronic illness, when your life gets abruptly interrupted, you want to know what is going on. You want to find answers.

And you want to be well and live your life again. Whatever that means to you.

This, I feel, is only natural. But how do you do that?


How To Live Your Life Again


One vital aspect of living your life (again) is letting go of the preconceived idea or ideas of how you think your life is supposed to be (now).

As well as, letting go of what society thinks how a ‘successful’ and ‘meaningful’ life should look like. Meaning, what you’re supposed to aim for, what you should have or possess and what you supposedly should have obtained at a certain age.

It is these beliefs and ideas that often cause a lot of pressure, a feeling of inferiority and of ‘not being enough’. And can feel especially overwhelming when chronic illness can make even the smallest things a big challenge.

Whereas, when you focus on what is true and joyful to YOU, you rethink this old idea of (your) life and create one that contains joy and meaning to you.

There is no lack involved.

What I have learned over the last 17 years is to listen to your true authentic self. The truth within your soul. For this will guide you to living your life (again), in whatever shape or form.

When we connect with our authentic self and act on what is in alignment with our truth, we experience joy and meaning straight away.

Even if these are seemingly minute steps.

This may not (immediately or completely) take away the pain or the challenges of living with chronic illness, but it’s what brings meaning, truth, joy and inner calm. And what medicine can ever give you that?

Your dreams may have changed like mine, but there are new dreams to be lived, and we find them when we connect with our truth within and express that truth.

What is your authentic self telling you? Please leave your comment below. I’d love to hear from you!



  • Dear Nicole,
    Thank you for wise calming words. Currently I am in a phase of accepting that my life is not going to be what I always thought it would be. It’s really hard to let go. I have quit so many things I loved to do. They were mostly connected with physical movement. But as stillness kicked in, new interests and talents began to emerge. Seems like it happened out of nowhere, but actually they were present all the time, but I didn’t pay attention. All they require is connection with myself. So now day by day I am more willing to accept everything that has changed. It’s still a struggle, but it not hopeless anymore. I’m sending you best wishes and love

  • Dear Lola, thank you for sharing your experience and kind words. I love how you discovered new interests and talents, and how you recognise that these were always there for you. It may not be, as you say, how you thought your life would be, and of course it can still be a struggle, but I am so pleased to read that you have chosen to be open to accepting what has changed and welcoming new aspects in your life. Very inspiring, thank you and best wishes and love to you too.

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