When you have sickle cell you can become severely anaemic which makes daily simple tasks become difficult and exhausting. I found bathing, cooking, cleaning, going the shops or even on a long journey became very difficult and tiring.
Before having my exchange transfusions, my haemoglobin would rarely be higher than around 6. Someone who doesn’t have sickle cell or anaemia has haemoglobin between 12-16. With my haemoglobin level being so low and constantly in hospital for sickle cell crisis my body was extremely weak. There was a time when I couldn’t physically hold my body weight to sit up and had to have pillows to prop me up.
I would often feel like I’m not living, I’m existing. I found I had no energy to do anything so I was always at home and usually in bed which effected me mentally. It would bother me that I couldn’t do normal things like my peers; it’s still something that bothers me till this day. It took me a very along time to accept my limitations, I didn’t want to accept defeat I wanted to be a “normal” 20 something, but as I got more and more depressed defeat came easy.
Throughout life I always felt like my sickle cell always eventually won and I was tired of fighting. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired; I just wanted to give up. My mind went to very dark places, at times I would pray for death, I would pray to be taken away and freed of my body, it was a burden I no longer wanted to carry, it was everything that was holding me trapped.
I believe that depression never fully goes away not in my case anyway. I believe that you have your good days and your bad/down days but you just learn to appreciate those good days…
My #sicklecellfamily I pray for your health happiness hope and strength, Alhumdulilah
You can find Aliya on Instagram here: @stylemealiya