An image of a woman on the phone with a speech bubble showing that she is saying no.

Finding Balance with Hepatitis C: "No" Is a Complete Sentence

Finding balance with hepatitis C is difficult, and it's important to remember that "No" is a complete sentence. How many of us struggle with saying “No” when it comes to being asked to participate in a function or event? Are you a people-pleaser and struggle with letting others down? Do you fear what they would say if you did say no?

Not wanting to disappoint others

My hand is high in the air right now. I am talking and writing about myself here. I hate disappointing others or feel bad if I do not help out when asked. Therefore, I suffer in the end. It is my body, my physical being that takes the brunt of over-commitment and over-scheduling my day.

Don’t get me wrong -- there are times when, yes, we must power through to be there for important things, like things our kids are doing, our job, or our spouse etc. For myself, I was running three companies, had two young kids with school activities and I wanted them to have a normal life. A life different from the one I had with a mom in-and-out of hospitals my whole life, missing important events that later in life I so wish she could have seen.

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Fighting through the pain for my kids

I swore that when I was diagnosed and given an end-stage liver disease diagnosis that my hepatitis C would not keep me from my kid's events. I would be sick and in so much pain, layered in clothes sitting on a bleacher seat to see my girl cheer at the football game, or on a Saturday morning watching my son bowl. It was those two things that I made sure to always be there job (employees depended on me running my companies) and my children. But, and here is my big one, when it came to then my kid’s schools needing parental help with boosters and working a concession stand or going on a field trip snowshoeing in the snow, I always seemed to say “sure”–not finding the balance I needed to recover.

I would then pay for these actions for days after because I overdid it. Not only did I hurt myself but I then was not at my best for my job or my kids the days following the “other” obligations I committed to.

Finding balance: setting my priorities

When going through hepatitis C treatment I would suggest one thing -- set priorities on your life to find balance. Take a few things that you know you need to be there for and learn to say “no”. It took me longer to heal after treatment because my body was so worn down, not only from the battle it fought inside me killing off the virus but over commitments, too. I wish I had someone doing a blog to give me permission to say “no” and it is ok to be selfish right now. That this time you are fighting is short and will soon be over but that I need to focus on Kim right now.

So, let me be that person to give you that permission to just say “NO”. Trust me - your body will thank you and so will those around you.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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