Each week we are highlighting a different Chronic Illness Bloggers’ member as our ‘Blogger of the Week‘. As well as getting to know each other better, we hope that you enjoy this series and that you find the interviews with each member to be insightful and helpful.
This week our blogger of the week is Amy of Amy’s Mystery Illness.
1. Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a Spoonie from the UK with a passion for blogging, cross stitch & reading, as well as intersectional feminism, mental health awareness and disability activism. I have the following disabilities: Fibromyalgia, Joint Hypermobility Syndrome, IBS, Depression, various Anxiety disorders, OCD, and Borderline Personality Disorder.
2. What is your blog called and how do you define your blog’s purpose?
My blog is called Amy’s Mystery Illness, and I started it to document my journey through assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and management of my various disabilities. As the blog gained more views, I decided to use it to raise awareness of my diagnoses, as well as sharing my experiences with and advice for disability and sickness benefits in the UK. I also review products to help with disabilities and symptoms; such as chronic pain.
3. How long have you been blogging and why did you start?
I’ve been blogging since January 2013. I originally started the blog to use as a sort of online journal. I wanted to note down my symptoms, experiences with approaching doctors, the tests carried out, diagnoses explored, and treatments I was given.
4. How often do you post? What made you decide to post on this schedule?
At the moment, I post once or twice a month. I usually wait for my next appointment, or for a particular disability based news item, and then post about that. I want to increase my blogging schedule to weekly, however, and focus on various topics related to my chronic illnesses and disabilities.
5. Do you feel blogging has benefitted you? If so, how?
Blogging has helped me to open up about my experiences with chronic illness and mental health, as well as possible triggers for them. I have also been able to connect with fellow spoonies and chronic illness bloggers. This has helped me cope with managing my disabilities and reaching out.
6. Why do you feel it’s important to blog about chronic illness?
There is a lot of stigma and there are many misconceptions about chronic illness. It can change your life completely and you experience various forms of loss. This could include loss of support from family members, loss of friends, and of course, loss of the life you once knew. Blogging helps to release your feelings about this, may help others to understand (if only a little) and can help to connect with fellow sufferers. I’ve found blogging has helped me feel less alone.
7. What are your top 3 blogging tips for other bloggers?
1) Share your posts regularly.
2) Write for yourself first of all, then for others.
3) Listen to your readers, you may find some helpful advice/ideas for your future posts!