Hello, my dear readers,
I hope that 2019 is treating you well! Happy valentines to those who celebrate & have partners! If you don’t, that’s okay, neither do I! Honestly though, boys are overrated so eh. (I would insert that emoji with the sassy girl, but computers don’t work like that. But know that’s what I’m feeling right now!)
Anyway, back on topic, the title if this post seems really intense, I promise it isn’t, try and stick with me. For me, the year has been hectic. I mean on the tenth of January, I literally spent the whole day thinking that we were in May! The ins and outs of my craziness aren’t all that important, right now. To me, what’s important is the fact that it’s currently 12:10 in the morning. My eyes are stinging, and my legs are beginning to swell from exhaustion. Don’t worry, this isn’t cause for panic it happens often for me. However, it’s thoroughly inconvenient. I’m supposed to be up early tomorrow but now I may bail because, if I’m lucky enough to get to sleep, I want to stay in that for as long as I can.
Why don’t I go to sleep instead of writing this? I hear you ask. Good question, unfortunately, I can’t sleep. A fun side effect of my condition is lots of muscle spasms. All day I’ve been having stomach ones which forces me to be in a constant state of nausea. Also, because I’ve been busy my leg spasms have been more intense than usual. So, instead of going to sleep I’m using a combination of writing this and a Brooklyn Nine-Nine binge to distract me. Before I continue, I must say this, you don’t need to feel sorry for me. I am okay, I am happy, and I love my life. The reason I decided to share this with you is that this is a part of my reality — as is with millions of people. So, today, I’m allowing you into some of the hardest moments of my last two-and-a-bit years.
It all started in November 2016. I was heading into finals for university and studying all hours. That meant lack of sleep and a thousand contemplations of dropping out. (Don’t judge me, we’ve all thought about it at major stress points in all of our degrees). All of this led to me having one of the worst colds of my life. I didn’t think much of it at the time, I knew that I was run down, and I figured that I would do my exams, rest and I would get better. Except, the getting better part never happened. Instead, I got worse. I would sleep almost all day; my body was in a constant state of heaviness and eyes bloodshot. I couldn’t stay awake through lectures, church, movies or anything at all. My pain was at an all-time high, and the doctors were out of solutions. All of this had been brought on by my Cerebral Palsy. My doctor explained it to me like this: for me to do anything it takes three times the energy than an abled person to do the same thing. My body is fighting pain and trying to do normal body functions at the same time. It’s all too much that my body cannot function in the same way as abled people. As to why it happened when it did, who knows? I guess my body had enough of forcing itself to work this hard.
Cut to June 2017, I had started to learn how to manage this new life of oversleeping and pain levels. I was feeling somewhat optimistic about the next few months. Although looking back, that optimism may have actually been denial. I had just graduated from my BA in Psychological Science and landed a part-time job as a receptionist at a psychology clinic. I was lost at the time, I had no idea what my future would be, all I knew was that I didn’t want to work as a psychologist. I had that job for about a month until giving me shifts that suited my physical abilities was too difficult for them, so I had to leave.
It’s been eighteen months since that job and it’s been hard. I haven’t been able to work and instead I’ve spent my days sleeping, writing, and hoping things will change. Don’t get me wrong there’s been good days. Sometimes, I can be beyond productive, I can see friends, I go and wheel up hills, and write three chapters in an afternoon. But those days are rare. Most days have been me struggling to get out of bed and if I do, I drag my feet around and feel like a zombie. My mind cloudy and unable to process full sentences. It’s made me lose friends who believe that “I’m not trying hard enough” or, “I don’t value their friendship.” Of course, those thoughts weren’t true, but they were not able to believe that. The people who didn’t leave would insist, “I didn’t look sick, so I should be better.” However, that was because I only see people (who don’t live with me) on my good days. No one sees me when I’m in screaming levels of pain and too exhausted to eat.
All of that brings me to now, February of 2019. My health remains the same, as is everything I do (although, I have created an addiction to jigsaw puzzles). However, my mentality has changed. To be honest, I’m bored, I am so freaking bored. Seriously, doing almost nothing for almost two years is mind numbing. So, this year I am taking a terrifying leap. I am going back to university, in two weeks, to study creative writing. This will be my second degree (and I assume it will be easier), but it freaks me out! I have no idea if I will be able to handle it or if my body will completely shut down. I’m doing it online so that it is not as much of a physical strain, but the energy still worries me. Even writing this is a huge struggle for me, my eyes aren’t wanting to stay open and my brain is in a complete fog. All I know is that I have to try something before I go even more insane. I’m not sharing this with you for attention or to be an inspiration, but I am sharing for two reasons.
Reason One: As mentioned before, if you guys are taking precious time out of your day to read this, (and other posts from me) you deserve to know me. It is not fair for me to want you to read things of mine if I’m not going, to be honest. I also believe that for me to make an impact, I have to be raw, and real. Nothing good will come of me lying or being fake.
Reason Two: To highlight that my last eighteen months, is many people’s reality. You often don’t see it or have any idea, but it’s there. If you have a friend who is going through something similar, please be patient. They are trying their best and hoping for a miracle. If they decide to do something but they’re not sure if they are capable, encourage them. Remind them that if it doesn’t work out, that’s okay. Please, please, please, be supportive even if you don’t understand it. The truth is, that support could transform everything,
I hope you found this interesting and even eye-opening.
Until next week, be kind to one another and to yourself.