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      It is inevitable that patients living with any type of chronic illness will experience difficult days. This is applicable to those of us living with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) as well, although the causes of those difficult days can vary.


      As an example, I find my days most difficult when my lungs are not cooperating and making it difficult for me to breathe due to environmental triggers, or an infection (viral or bacterial). When I physically can’t do what I “should” be able to do at 30 years old due to poor lungs, I consider this a difficult day for me. Other causes of my difficult days come from: poor test results, hospital admissions or multiple appointments in one day that usually causes me extreme fatigue.


      Unfortunately patients living with IPF will be subjected to some difficult days due to their disease, this is something we all have in common and cannot control. However, what we can control is how we choose to respond to those difficult days.


      In response to difficult days, my friend often asks me: what are you going to do to reclaim some joy today? I often have to give it some thought, but it has become an important question to my learning to cope with difficult days since my diagnosis.


      To other PF/IPF patients: how do you reclaim some joy after a difficult day with your disease?

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