Black and white shot of karina, a woman with super short brown hair, wearing a hat and huge hoop earrings
Karina Sturm

Hello, and welcome to my Blog about all things chronic illness and disability. 

My name is Karina, I am a German native but have been residing in San Francisco for six years now, and I live with a variety of chronic conditions, including Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, mast cell activation syndrome, dysautonomia, craniocervical instability, factor VII deficiency, small fiber neuropathy and a handful of others.

Besides being a full-time professional patient that annoys her doctors to death by questioning pretty much everything, I am a freelance journalist, writer and filmmaker. I mostly write for ABILITY Magazine in the US, and ‘die Neue Norm’ and ‘Ärzte Woche’ in Germany/Austria. My focus is on chronic illness, disability, health and science. 

Journalism is my third degree overall. Before becoming chronically ill, I started out as a medical assistant, followed by another degree as a research associate (lab tech). In 2019, I finished my MA in journalism at Edinburgh Napier University in Scotland, and since then, I have been combining my personal experience with illness and disability with my research background to create articles (and films) portraying people with disabilities accurately. Well, at least I tried. I am still learning more about ableism and disability representation every day.

I decided to add an English section to my existing Blog because over the years, I have been traveling all across the world and made friends in many countries. I want everyone to be able to follow my journey and to know what’s going on in my life. 

My whole life, and all I do is writing. It’s my passion, my weapon to change the world, and quite frankly, with my disability, all I have left to cope with any challenge that arises. Writing is my all. 

I have a very strong sense for justice, believe honesty is the best policy, and I am very direct – like very much straight in your face – and, yeah, before I forget, I fucking love cursing as you could have guessed by the name of the website – did you know people that curse are a) considered to be smarter and b) cope better? (Just some excuses for my language.) So if you don’t like people writing from the heart and using the f-word a whole lot, this Blog might not be for you. I am very stubborn, impatient, a perfectionist; I like facts (yes, I will ask you to prove a fact with a scientific study), but I am also a heart person, meaning, as my therapist says, “Your heart doesn’t have a brain.” I am annoyingly loyal; If I love you, I will always love you, and I will metaphorically jump off a cliff for you. And most people consider me a pessimist, even though I would rather say I am a slightly pessimistic realist based on my experiences as a chronically ill and disabled person. 

Other than that, I am into tattoos, Heavy Metal music; my pronouns are she/her, but I am not entirely sure about my sexual orientation (see, I do overshare a lot); I am the happiest version of myself when I am at or on any body of water or covered by puppies (this still needs to happen); I love trying food from all over the world, with my favorite being sushi, pizza and chicken tikka masala with fries (yes, I must have fries!); I have a bit of a temper; I don’t talk in the morning before I had at least one cup of coffee, and I love foot massages (mainly because any other part of my body hurts). 

So now you know all there is to know about me. Well, maybe not all of it. But you will find out more if you continue reading my Blog. Thanks for being here! Thanks for supporting me and my work!

Love, 

Karina

You can find all my journalistic work @www.karina-sturm.com and my film @www.we-are-visible-film.com.

And please follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Insta.