Why Blog on Style for Sick Women?

IMG_0363You might be wondering why I’m doing a blog on style for ill women. Why can’t we just read other blogs on fashion?  Because changes wrought by illness and treatment go beyond the changes most healthy women experience.  I also help women deal with challenges like pain, chronic fatigue, and unexpected insults from people about our changed appearance.  I want this blog to be a place where people can vent and find solutions to everyday challenges.   Rich people and celebrities have stylists.  So why don’t sick women?  This blog will include links to products from makeup to clothes to disability tools.   I will also feature “best bang for your buck” buys because I know that style should be affordable.

This blog is for:

a) Brave women fighting illness

b) Survivors of illnesses (emotional, physical, invisible or visible)

c) Family, friends, and coworkers who want to better understand the sick women they love

d) Anyone who enjoys learning about makeup and fashion

All My Illnesses

All illnesses are trying.   If my life were a soap opera, it would be called “All My Illnesses.”  In fact, I affectionately call my cane Erica Kane.  I am 28-years old.  I have four illnesses—Bipolar II, Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), Myasthenia Gravis (MG, as fun as Multiple Sclerosis but harder to pronounce), and asthma.  I was diagnosed with these at the ages of 18, 19, 24, and 26, respectively.

MG, a neuromuscular autoimmune disease, happens to 1 in 100,000 people.  It brings daily fatigue and pain all over my body.  It has exacerbated the painful PCOS.  Sleep apnea adds to respiratory problems caused by MG.  Basically, “wicked antibodies’” attack different parts of my body, which makes involuntary actions like breathing, swallowing, talking, and balancing hard.

Future Topics of This Blog: Backfat, Cankles, Hairloss, Etc.

After my 2008 diagnosis and hospitalization for MG, I found a dearth of material on fashion for sick women.  Time and again, I encountered the same messages:  Beauty isn’t just for size zeroes.  Style isn’t just for twenty-year olds.  While I agree, I never found anything telling me that beauty isn’t just for healthy women.  I was on Prednisone (steroids) and eleven other medications (and I still am).  Between 2008 and 2010, I went from a size 0 to a size 10.  Even though the latter is not big, many people who knew I was sick insulted me.  I learned that women could be stylish at any size.  And I do believe in style in sickness and in health.  Every woman has been granted certain inalienable rights: the right to beautystyle, and the pursuit of confidence.  These are some issues we’ll address:

  • Body Image
  • Insults about changes in our appearance
  • Backfat
  • “Cankles” (when the ankles and calves become one)
  • Acne and scarring
  • Prednisone’s infamous “Moonface”
  • Hair loss
  • Changes in chest size
  • Surviving pain and fatigue
  • Community

Your Turn?

What topics would you like to discuss?

–Your Stylist, Jessica Gimeno

JessicaGimeno

Hi, I have five illnesses--bipolar disorder, myasthenia gravis (neuromuscular autoimmune disease), polycystic ovarian syndrome, asthma, and psoriasis. Most of the organs in my body are affected. I'm dedicated to being a stylist for sick women. As someone who has experienced changes in my appearance due to my 12 meds (including Prednisone), I know how hard it can be when your face and body change overnight. (In fact, because of treatment, between 2008 to 2010, I went from a size 0 to a size 10. While I lost the weight, there are permanent changes in my face and body, which I've grown to appreciate.) My blog will also help women deal with other issues like surviving chronic pain and fatigue. Healthy people can also use this blog as a window into what life with illness is like. Let this website be a place where we can draw strength from each other despite our illnesses and find solutions to our everyday challenges!

6 thoughts on “Why Blog on Style for Sick Women?

  • June 20, 2012 at 1:20 am
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    Amazing article, thanks, I will subscribe to you RSS later!

    Reply
    • June 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm
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      Thanks so much for the compliment. I just started this site. If you don’t mind my asking, what brought you here? How did you find out about it?

      Reply
  • June 22, 2012 at 7:12 pm
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    So sorry to hear that you are struggling with illness. It is a difficult and often lonely journey. I have struggled with IBS since age 16, and fibromyalgia since 2004. I found a website called ‘But I don’t look sick’.com I have had days I wanted to paint my face green so people would know how bad I feel on the inside. I wish you the best in your journey of helping others with self confidence.

    Reply
  • July 3, 2012 at 11:43 am
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    Good idea for helping women with questions about changes to our bodies and how to keep looking our best . I am losing my hair, had to cut it short. Was very traumatic for me.

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    • July 3, 2012 at 12:03 pm
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      It was traumatic for me too before when I lost my long hair. What are you thinking of doing? I want to explore this issue further on this site. I’m glad that you like the blog!

      Reply
  • July 15, 2012 at 11:19 pm
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    i know how u feel..though we dont have same illness, im also sick and also underwent pred therapy for some time…dont stop believing…soon we’ll get better…miracles do happen 🙂

    Reply

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