This week on It’s OK that You’re Not OK:
Living with chronic illness: a conversation for everyone with a body, with Sarah Ramey
Look, there are some things in life – a LOT of things in life – that just can’t be fixed or made better, you have to figure out how you’re going to live with them. If you’ve ever felt othered and invisible because of an illness or disability – this episode is for you. If you’ve ever loved someone with a chronic illness, or you’re a medical provider in any capacity, this episode is 3000% for you.
And if you’re grieving some other loss or hardship, you’ll recognize so much of yourself in this conversation: that human desire to be seen, loved, and supported, exactly as you are.
Sarah Ramey spent DECADES trying to find answers for why her body was falling apart. Her book, The Lady’s Handbook for Her Mysterious Illness, describes the complex, convoluted path through conventional and alternative medicines, her frustrations with being deemed a liar and hypochondriac, and the overlapping issues of misogyny, ableism, and well meaning but unhelpful support.
5 things you’ll learn in this episode:
- What it’s really like having a chronic, invisible illness (and if you have one, you’ll feel seen!)
- How truly messed up the medical system is: Sarah’s years’ long efforts to be believed by doctors, and at a minimum: not be overtly harmed while seeking care
- How does being in a female body shift your odds of being believed – for ANYTHING, but especially mysterious, chronic illnesses?
- Sarah’s music was featured in the hit show “Wednesday,” on Netflix. Can you be a successful musician and have a disability?
- Why hope is a complex concept when your life is constrained by illness or disability (and why hope is still REALLY important)
About our guest:
Sarah Ramey is a writer and musician (known as Wolf Larsen). Her work has been featured in The Paris Review, NPR, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Ms. Magazine, and the Netflix show, Wednesday. Her book, The Lady’s Handbook for Her Mysterious Illness was a starred selection for Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, and Booklist. Learn more at sarahmarieramey.com and wolflarsenmusic.com.
Sarah has been living with serious chronic pain and illness for seventeen years.
- To join the next embodied writing course mentioned in the show, sign up at roottherapymaine.com
- Read Sarah’s memoir: The Lady’s Handbook for Her Mysterious Illness
- Listen to Sarah’s solo album: Quiet at the Kitchen Door
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