What’s a Spoonie?

A spoonie is a person who suffers from chronic physical or mental illness. It is mostly used to describe invisible illnesses, which are illnesses that are not obviously apparent when you meet someone. The phrase is based on an article called The Spoon Theory by Christine Miserandino where she attempts to describe what it is like to have lupus to a well meaning but confused friend. You can read the full article at the site below.

The Spoon Theory written by Christine Miserandino

It's an analogy to try to explain what it is like to have chronic illness and live with limited amounts of energy. Energy = spoons.

For example:

take a shower - one spoon

make breakfast - one spoon

do the dishes - one spoon

drive to work - one-two spoons

try on multiple outfits - two spoons

If you only have 13 spoons worth of energy, you've already used up more than half of them before your day has even started.

Some days you wake up with no spoons at all and can barely drag yourself out of bed to the bathroom.

Some days you push yourself to keep going past your spoon limit and end up completely crashing the next day. Sometimes if I push myself past my limit I literally pass out or start shaking uncontrollably or both.

You can also save your spoons by taking a day off (from life), before a day that you know will cost a lot of spoons. Though it isn't guaranteed to work.

The article explains it far more elegantly but that's the basic idea.


So what makes you a Spoonie,  Jessie?

Here comes the obligatory list of aliments...

I had undiagnosed lyme disease for 15 years which lead to huge damage to my immune system. I have 10 major food allergies/intolerances as a result of the lyme and developed SIBO (small intestinal bacteria overgrowth), Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, generalized unspecified autoimmune disorder, and unspecified connective tissue disorder. Basically, it's not quite lupus or RA, but I definitely have symptoms of both. My immune system refused to be labelled as just one thing. I have many side effects and long term damage from the lyme such as muscle/join pain, flare ups, hyper tension, and brain fog. I was also born with the genetic condition hyper-mobility in most of my joints and tend to dislocated things easily. I have to see a chiropractor regularly in order to be able to mitigate my pain levels.


Photo taken while hiking in a hurricane