There is a certain aspect of chronic illness that "normals" can not possibly understand because, they are, well...normal. It seems so long ago that I too was normal. This was when I used to get my once a year bout with bronchitis. Wow. I thought that would kill me lol Boy if I only knew what was in store.
People are typically very pleasant upon seeing someone they know. The first thing out of their mouth is usually "how are you". How ARE you. How are YOU. Any way you emphasize it, this is a tricky response for a lot of us. My best friend asked me this seemingly simple question not two days ago. My reply? I am fabulous! She said "really" haha. YES really!
Here is my whack-a-doodle theory. People ask the above question but only mean it half heartedly. They really do not want the full spiel of how we are physically and mentally. I feel chronic illness confuses people and leaves them without truly knowing what to say to us. Depending on your particular illness, it can be VERY confusing. I have CVID and now have developed a lung disease known as GLILD and am waiting to go to National Jewish Hospital in Colorado for a diagnosis and treatment plan. My doctors here have NO idea what to do, have all told me such and so here I sit and wait and wait, not knowing if I am going to die, end up on oxygen or if irreparable damage is being done. My friends do not know what to say except I am sorry. If you truly love your friends and family, tell them you are fabulous and save the medical lessons for the very very important things. If you love them, do not put them in an uncomfortable situation by giving them all of this stuff they cannot do a thing with. They cannot help. We do not have a right to make them feel helpless. We know, they are there for us if we need them. Join a support group, make some friends with chronic illness. They will love to hear all the details as they are in this war with us.