You Don't Look Sick!: Living Well With Chronic Invisible Illness

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Overview

You Don't Look Sick chronicles one person's true-life story of illness and her physicians compassionate commentary as they journey through the four stages of chronic illness-Getting Sick, Being Sick, Grief and Acceptance and Living Well. The authors address such practical aspects as hiring a doctor, managing chronic pain, coping with grief and loss of function, winning battles with health and disability insurers, countering the social bias against the chronically ill, and recognizing the limitations of chronic ...

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Overview

You Don't Look Sick chronicles one person's true-life story of illness and her physicians compassionate commentary as they journey through the four stages of chronic illness-Getting Sick, Being Sick, Grief and Acceptance and Living Well. The authors address such practical aspects as hiring a doctor, managing chronic pain, coping with grief and loss of function, winning battles with health and disability insurers, countering the social bias against the chronically ill, and recognizing the limitations of chronic illness care and charting a path for change and more. This warmhearted resource helps you focus on building a meaningful life as opposed to a life of frustration and fear.

This book is thoroughly revised and updated based upon feedback from readers of the first edition. The authors have added a new section on Grief and Acceptance, address the passage of the Affordable Health Care Act and Dr. Overman has added practical travel tips that bring organization and focus to each phase of the journey. Designed for people at all stages of the chronic illness journey, this book is also illuminating for caregivers and loved ones.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"You Don't LOOK Sick! is an essential tool for patients, families, and providers working with invisible chronic illness." - Patricia A. Fennell, MSW, LCSW-R, Author of Managing Chronic Illness Using the Four-Phase Treatment Approach

"Inspiring and insightful personal journey of chronic illness by a young woman and her physician. The message is an important one - overcoming the fear, loneliness and life-changing consequences of chronic illness is an achievable and essential goal for everyone as they work to restore their lives."- John H. Klippel, MD, President and CEO, Arthritis Foundation

"Living with a chronic illness changes every aspect of your life and when that illness is invisible, it changes your life in ways you never could have imagined. Easy-to-read and written from the heart by two experts-the patient and the physician-this excellent book provides the wisdom, understanding, and validation you need to take back the control your illness has taken away. The anecdotes, tips, and strategies give you the tools you need to survive and thrive despite your challenges and in the end, gives you hope for the future." -Shelley Peterman Schwarz, Award-winning writer and author of seven Tips for Making Life Easier books

"This book was a tremendous help to me in adjusting to my own life with chronic illness. I consider it a must-read for sufferers like myself, for those who care for them, and for those who love them. You Don't LOOK Sick! is unique in its approach because it gives us two perspectives-that of the patient and the doctor. They understand our fears and frustrations and, most importantly, they lay out the steps we can take to find peace and well-being despite this unexpected turn in our lives. People who are facing chronic illness need easy-to-apply concrete tools to help adjust to this drastic life change, and this book provides those tools. You Don't LOOK Sick! shows readers how to transform the trauma of chronic illness into a life of acceptance, purpose, and gratitude." -Toni Bernhard, Author of How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers

"Joy and Steve have the insight and courage to present their stories and experiences with depth and integrity and in a very holistic manner. By weaving and blending the spiritual and material they offer both hope and courage for those with a serious medical condition who still search for a medical support system. The format of the book, the chapter summaries, the questions for discussion, and the list of resources at the end are superb."
-Mavourneen McGinty, SND, Sisters of Notre Dame de Nemur, Former Educator, Hospital Chaplain, Counselor

"Joy Selak is like all of us, a person who can trip and fall, but get right back up and try again. I was delighted reading how she manages to handle it all and how Dr. Overman works as her coach, providing the tools to help beat the challenges. Most books on illness make me feel worse because I wasn't dealing very well and must surely be doing something wrong. You Don't LOOK Sick!: Living Well with Invisible Chronic Illness makes me feel hopeful I can be comfortable in my own body no matter what ails it!"
-Karen Babcock, Has hepatitis C, Sjogren's syndrome, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis

"You Don't LOOK Sick! is absolutely essential reading for anyone with an 'invisible' disease. Joy Selak's book saved the day for me with her invaluable practical information and tips on how to relate to the company I work for, and the insurance provider, about my disease."-Kathy Olsen, Division Communications Manager for a Fortune 500 company, has MS

"You Don't LOOK Sick! is a poignant and easy-to-read journey of a person afflicted with a chronic illness, her struggle to come to terms with her disease, and her acceptance of and adaptation to it. Joy Selak takes this journey with her supportive husband, and takes the literary journey with her physician who adds to the book valuable reflection and a medical perspective. This book combines the difficult lessons learned with humor and with more grace than I could imagine mustering. This text will be very helpful to many of my patients going on the same journey."
-Bob Crittenden, MD, MPH, Chief of Family Medicine, Harborview Medical Center, Seattle, Washington

"This book is a masterful, insightful, and useful account of the patient's and physician's perspective, in their own words and frames of mind, on recognizing, confronting, and dealing with chronic illness. This multifaceted perspective is one with which not only patients with chronic illnesses of any nature but also their health care providers and family members will certainly identify, and from which all will benefit. Chronic illnesses are greatly underrecognized and undertreated, and books such as this contribute to educating a broad audience in a meaningful and practical way."
-Roberto Patarca-Montero, MD, PhD, HCLD, Author of Concise Encyclopedia of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

From the Publisher
You Don’t LOOK Sick! is an essential tool for patients, families, and providers working with invisible chronic illness.” — Patricia A. Fennell, MSW, LCSW-R, Author of Managing Chronic Illness Using the Four-Phase Treatment Approach

“Inspiring and insightful personal journey of chronic illness by a young woman and her physician.The message is an important one — overcoming the fear, loneliness and life-changing consequences of chronic illness is an achievable and essential goal for everyone as they work to restore their lives.” — John H. Klippel, MD, President and CEO, Arthritis Foundation

“Living with a chronic illness changes every aspect of your life and when that illness is invisible, it changes your life in ways you never could have imagined. Easy-to-read and written from the heart by two experts—the patient and the physician—this excellent book provides the wisdom, understanding, and validation you need to take back the control your illness has taken away. The anecdotes, tips, and strategies give you the tools you need to survive and thrive despite your challenges and in the end, gives you hope for the future.” —Shelley Peterman Schwarz, Award-winning writer and author of seven Tips for Making Life Easier books

“This book was a tremendous help to me in adjusting to my own life with chronic illness. I consider it a must-read for sufferers like myself, for those who care for them, and for those who love them. You Don’t LOOK Sick! is unique in its approach because it gives us two perspectives— that of the patient and the doctor. They understand our fears and frustrations and, most importantly, they lay out the steps we can take to find peace and well-being despite this unexpected turn in our lives. People who are facing chronic illness need easy-to-apply concrete tools to help adjust to this drastic life change, and this book provides those tools. You Don’t LOOK Sick! shows readers how to transform the trauma of chronic illness into a life of acceptance, purpose, and gratitude.” —Toni Bernhard, Author of How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers

From The Critics
"You Don't LOOK Sick! is an essential tool for patients, families, and providers working with invisible chronic illness." - Patricia A. Fennell, MSW, LCSW-R, Author of Managing Chronic Illness Using the Four-Phase Treatment Approach

"Inspiring and insightful personal journey of chronic illness by a young woman and her physician. The message is an important one - overcoming the fear, loneliness and life-changing consequences of chronic illness is an achievable and essential goal for everyone as they work to restore their lives."- John H. Klippel, MD, President and CEO, Arthritis Foundation

"Living with a chronic illness changes every aspect of your life and when that illness is invisible, it changes your life in ways you never could have imagined. Easy-to-read and written from the heart by two experts-the patient and the physician-this excellent book provides the wisdom, understanding, and validation you need to take back the control your illness has taken away. The anecdotes, tips, and strategies give you the tools you need to survive and thrive despite your challenges and in the end, gives you hope for the future." -Shelley Peterman Schwarz, Award-winning writer and author of seven Tips for Making Life Easier books

"This book was a tremendous help to me in adjusting to my own life with chronic illness. I consider it a must-read for sufferers like myself, for those who care for them, and for those who love them. You Don't LOOK Sick! is unique in its approach because it gives us two perspectives-that of the patient and the doctor. They understand our fears and frustrations and, most importantly, they lay out the steps we can take to find peace and well-being despite this unexpected turn in our lives. People who are facing chronic illness need easy-to-apply concrete tools to help adjust to this drastic life change, and this book provides those tools. You Don't LOOK Sick! shows readers how to transform the trauma of chronic illness into a life of acceptance, purpose, and gratitude." -Toni Bernhard, Author of How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers

"Joy and Steve have the insight and courage to present their stories and experiences with depth and integrity and in a very holistic manner. By weaving and blending the spiritual and material they offer both hope and courage for those with a serious medical condition who still search for a medical support system. The format of the book, the chapter summaries, the questions for discussion, and the list of resources at the end are superb."
-Mavourneen McGinty, SND, Sisters of Notre Dame de Nemur, Former Educator, Hospital Chaplain, Counselor

"Joy Selak is like all of us, a person who can trip and fall, but get right back up and try again. I was delighted reading how she manages to handle it all and how Dr. Overman works as her coach, providing the tools to help beat the challenges. Most books on illness make me feel worse because I wasn't dealing very well and must surely be doing something wrong. You Don't LOOK Sick!: Living Well with Invisible Chronic Illness makes me feel hopeful I can be comfortable in my own body no matter what ails it!"
-Karen Babcock, Has hepatitis C, Sjogren's syndrome, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis

"You Don't LOOK Sick! is absolutely essential reading for anyone with an 'invisible' disease. Joy Selak's book saved the day for me with her invaluable practical information and tips on how to relate to the company I work for, and the insurance provider, about my disease."-Kathy Olsen, Division Communications Manager for a Fortune 500 company, has MS

"You Don't LOOK Sick! is a poignant and easy-to-read journey of a person afflicted with a chronic illness, her struggle to come to terms with her disease, and her acceptance of and adaptation to it. Joy Selak takes this journey with her supportive husband, and takes the literary journey with her physician who adds to the book valuable reflection and a medical perspective. This book combines the difficult lessons learned with humor and with more grace than I could imagine mustering. This text will be very helpful to many of my patients going on the same journey."
-Bob Crittenden, MD, MPH, Chief of Family Medicine, Harborview Medical Center, Seattle, Washington

"This book is a masterful, insightful, and useful account of the patient's and physician's perspective, in their own words and frames of mind, on recognizing, confronting, and dealing with chronic illness. This multifaceted perspective is one with which not only patients with chronic illnesses of any nature but also their health care providers and family members will certainly identify, and from which all will benefit. Chronic illnesses are greatly underrecognized and undertreated, and books such as this contribute to educating a broad audience in a meaningful and practical way."
-Roberto Patarca-Montero, MD, PhD, HCLD, Author of Concise Encyclopedia of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781936303427
  • Publisher: Demos Medical Publishing, LLC
  • Publication date: 12/17/2012
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 200
  • Sales rank: 215,844
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Joy H. Selak has lived with chronic autoimmune, musculoskeletal, and neurological conditions since the late 1980s. Joy is the current board president of ZACH Theatre, the premier professional theatre in Austin, Texas. She is also involved in ZACH's education programs and serves on MindPOP, an organization dedicated to providing all Austin schoolchildren with an arts rich education. She is married and her very blended family includes six grown children and ten grandchildren, so far.

Steven S. Overman, MD is a founding member of The Seattle Arthritis Clinic. He is a Professor of Clinical Medicine, Division Chief of Rheumatology and recent Director of Musculoskeletal Planning at University of Washington Northwest Hospital. He was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar and has an MPH degree, was medical director of a Medicare health plan, is board certified in quality assurance and has been active in the American College of Rheumatology. He loves traveling and outdoor activities with his wife and three adult sons.

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Table of Contents

Phase 1: Getting Sick
Snake in the Mist
Three Strikes
Pills, Procedures and Paperwork
Dr. Overman on Getting Sick: The Stuck Car
Phase II: Being Sick
Pain
Disabled Bit Not Invalid
The Ladies Who Lunch
Dr. Overman on Being Sick: The Athlete and the Coach
Phase III: Grief and Acceptance
I Cry
Still Time
A Gift of Grace
Dr. Overman on Grief and Acceptance: The Waves of Loss
Phase IV: Living Well
Joy's Top Ten List for Living Well, Even While Sick
Stepping Out of the Box
Natural High
Dr. Overman on Living Well: Weaving the Web of Wellness
Chronic Illness Care: In the Eye of the Storm by Robert Crittenden, MD

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 19, 2013

    Well-written and easy to read, this is a book about coping with

    Well-written and easy to read, this is a book about coping with a chronic health condition. In alternating sections Joy Selak, a patient, and Steven Overman, a physician, discuss the Four Phases of Invisible Chronic Illness: Getting Sick, Being Sick, Grief and Acceptance, and Living Well.

    I have lived with invisible chronic illness for 11 years. I wish I would have had this book at the start of my journey. I have read many books about my health condition, many of which promise a miracle cure with an exercise, a supplement, or a diet, which ultimately did not work for me. This guide does not dispense specific medical advice, but offers a glimpse into how to live, and indeed thrive, when you live with an ongoing medical condition. Outlook, understanding, and relationships are at the heart of the discussion. To hear Joy so eloquently describe many of my internal and external challenges and to know I am not alone in my experience brought tears to my eyes on a few occasions. (E.g. wondering what to say when people ask, "How are you?" in passing) This is a book I will keep and reread over the years when I find myself needing a bit of a boost. Highly recommended for those living with an invisible chronic illness as well as their caregivers and family members!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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