Author Archives: Alliah Czarielle

Living a ‘Demi-normal’ Life With Chronic Illnesses

“Demi-normal.” It’s a term I’ve coined to describe how my husband, Jared, and I both live with chronic illness. Most people are familiar with the prefix “demi-,” meaning “halfway,” “almost but not quite,” or “to an inferior degree.” For instance, a demigod‘s status is above man’s, but…

These Are the Kind of Friends We Need

Meaningful connections with other people are of incredible value to people with chronic illnesses. My husband, Jared, and I can both attest to this, as he lives with severe hemophilia B and a seizure disorder, while I am newly diagnosed with both bipolar II disorder and the inattentive…

Women’s Day Reminded Me of the Importance of Equality

Tuesday morning, March 8. Bright rays of sun had already passed through our floor-length bedroom windows, but my sleep-deprived brain was fighting to keep my eyes shut for a few more minutes. The day before I had worked myself into a mental breakdown, which had zapped my energy completely. “Wake…

My New Diagnosis Tightens the Bond I Have With My Husband

I recently started seeing a psychiatrist again to confirm the state of my mental health. Though I haven’t been experiencing any serious symptoms lately, I thought it might be good to stay on track with my checkups. Thankfully, my new doctor offered me flexible payment terms, which encouraged me even…

Stepping Out of the Echo Chamber Is Crucial for Advocacy

It’s election season here in the Philippines, and two presidential candidates, both with large bases of support, are going head-to-head. In light of this, I came across a social media post reminding people to get out of their “echo chambers” and make their voices heard during this election cycle. The…

Reflections on Pain After an Odd Jaw Bleed

It happened after a month of celebrations. First, it was Christmas and New Year’s. Then, it was my husband Jared’s birthday. Five days later, our daughter, Cittie, turned 3. Plus, we had just moved to a new home next to some uncles who kept inviting us to relatives’ birthdays…

My Husband Is Strong Because of Hemophilia

A sealed jar that no one can open. A faucet attachment that’s been screwed on too tightly. A piece of furniture that needs to be moved. These are just some of the problems we encounter at our home on a regular basis. And the one person who can solve them?…