Do you feel invisible? Are you ready for the world to see you?
Megan Densmore is ready, and she and her team are looking for others who are ready to share their story of invisible chronic illness with the world.
Megan was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia at the age of 13. She was told that she would never have a normal life, that she would spend her life taking pain medications just to get through the day. But, Megan wasn’t ready to give in. This year she’ll be 31 and she’s proven that they were wrong. She chose a different path, a path of natural healing through diet, nutrition, supplementation, and exercise. She says that her last flare was almost four years ago. She’s not only been able to return to a normal life, but to a life as a competitive athlete. Her sport is kettle bells, and after hearing her talk about it I will never look at those little round weights the same way again.
The sport of competitive kettle bells is hardcore, your body literally changes to adapt to the way that you hold and swing the kettle bells. Megan has trained in her chosen sport only since 2012. She completed her first competition in March of 2012, and is working towards the certification of Candidate Master Sport. The competitions and rankings are based on the weight of the kettle bell and the number of reps you complete in the allotted amount of time. In August she just missed qualifying, but she will continue to compete, and is hoping that they add this sport to the Olympics. Maybe we will see her there one day.
Megan says that the sport of kettle bells requires a lot of adaptation and creativity; not much different from living life with Fibromyalgia and other invisible autoimmune diseases. She says that her life with Fibromyalgia has been an interesting journey, one that has taught her to be patient with herself. Fibromyalgia is invisible, so no one knew she was sick unless she told them. She could easily hide it (as we all learn to do). She said it shifts how you interact and communicate with people. Since she was diagnosed so young, she feels it’s really affected her ability to communicate and share her life with others. This is the side of the illness that she wants to document in Invisible: The Film.
Megan is working with Pallavi Sastry to produce a documentary that will tell not only how invisible chronic illness has changed her life, but the lives others who live with a variety of invisible illnesses every day. Through Invisible: The Film, she and her team want to document how chronic illness affected her life, as well as share similar stories from others. They are still interviewing and seeking others who would want to share their life on film. While many people are open to sharing a snapshot of their life, this would be more than that; this would be a year in the life of someone living with chronic illness. They want to show what it’s really like, show what communication is like between those living with chronic illness and the people around them. They are focusing on younger patients (under 40) living with invisible chronic autoimmune illness. If you feel that you’d be open to sharing your story and your life on film, contact their team for an interview.
Check out this trailer for the documentary.
Their goal is to bring not only attention, but empathy to these various invisible illnesses, that impact our lives and take our voices away. For Megan and her team, it’s all about making a difference in the lives of those living with chronic illness, what it’s like for them to connect with the world. To show us that we don’t have to hide our illness, that we can choose to make it visible, to bring us the acknowledgement and validation that we all seek. If this sounds like a good idea, then make sure to follow Invisible: The Film on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with what they are doing. If you want to share your story, then contact them.