Author Archives: Charlene Marshall

Reflecting on Another Birthday With IPF

A doctor once told me he wasn’t sure I’d survive until my 30th birthday. If I did, I’d likely be dependent on supplemental oxygen, unlike any other young adult I knew at the time. This week, I turned 34. Reflecting on my nearly six years with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF)…

I’m Living With IPF and Need to Slow Down

I’ve always been guilty of putting too much pressure on myself. While I was diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) five years ago, I still haven’t learned how to slow down and avoid putting so much pressure on myself. This is despite the disease causing me extreme fatigue, breathlessness,…

Close Friends Can Provide Valuable Insight When We’re Anxious

Friendships can change when chronic illnesses like idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) enter the picture. Some might struggle to understand a friend’s illness, needs, and limitations. And the friend with the illness might change too, depending on how they cope. However, I believe true friendships can withstand these challenges, and even…

Why September Is Hard for Me as an IPF Patient

As a patient living with a chronic illness, I’ve become comfortable with people using clichés to try to comfort me. People naturally want to relate to others, but it’s often hard for someone who’s healthy to understand the experiences of a young adult who requires oxygen to breathe. One cliché…

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