I received several emails after I posted the blog about struggling with lymphedema. Thank you for sharing so openly, trusting me with your stories and encouraging me in mine.

While I write openly about health issues, areas that I find much harder to navigate are ones that can’t be talked about publicly. Suffering is increased when we are alone, when others don’t understand or belittle our difficulty.

Entangled lawsuits, personality disorders, a spouse with undiagnosed mental illness, ongoing marital struggles, affairs, adult children in trouble with the law, deep doo-doo with church leadership, are life struggles all to common for this audience. I’m not exaggerating because you just wrote and told me so.

Several of you kindly wrote how you applied what I was learning to your ongoing struggle. I know that you know that I know what you face is hard to even begin to describe in words. I’m also aware of the unwanted impact it would have if we openly shared it all. Not a good idea.

So I realized something. Lymphedema gives me a platform where I can write openly about one of my struggles. If that encourages you and increases your faith, well bring it on!

Shari Thomas