Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Rest, don't quit

And the best intentions always seem to be consumed by my body's utterly insatiable need for......... rest.  So January was not filled with blog posts/ positive inspirations/ etc. Honestly, what can I say except sometimes 'sleep happens' (and not always when I need it to happen; so when it comes in waves, I am taking advantage...... sleep heals? Right? - No. Honestly, I don't think so, if sleep healed I would be f***king superwoman by now; but everything else hurts less when I'm unconscious, so sleep still wins).

There was a time I would never have believed writing one thing a day could be too much.... but there's a lot I know now that I would never have believed 'before'. Erm, for example that I actually would learn to rest!

 When I am healthy, and fit, and energetic, and strong again (positive mantras); when my perseverance finally prevails -  I don't care that my body is probably going to try to remind me that 'we'* are not in our twenties anymore; I am going to remind it that ALL it did for the majority of my twenties, and so far much of my thirties, was battle with me when I needed to wake up and.... well, do stuff; do anything really - how hard every single physical and mental task is right now.  It* has to make up for lost time.

Therefore when it* is able, when I start bouncing places again, instead of trying to hide a limp and struggle to match the speed of a snail; I will remind my body about all that time we* have to make up for....  I will remind it about aerial yoga, acro-yoga, indoor trampoline parks with foam pits and parkour-trampolining walls..... actually, and parkour, slacklining, 'mainstream' breakdancing..... all of it - I will remind my body that it was just not an option when I first read about it/ watched it and longed to try every single thing -  that when I get my bounce back, I have over a decade to make up for!!  And sometimes, that thought is exactly what I need to keep me going - whether it's battling through one day, or accepting that - yes - 'resting enables healing'.

Yes, I have learned how important it is to rest.  I have learned that there are types of pure fatigue and exhaustion that nobody knows how much rest they really need.  That all the rest in the world can't fix 'tired' sometimes.   But because I have learned this; I have also learned I will never, ever take my energy or my health for granted when I get it back.  I have learned I need to rest.  I have also learned never to quit.  Because despite everything - every puzzle, every mystery, every obstacle that I have encountered, I have eventually learned enough to fight it (or sleep through it; cry through it - embracing honesty, remember! And it often feels far more like sleeping and crying dominate. Whatever way.... I have learned I can get through it; whatever that takes).  And one day, I want to look back over this and say I did enough to overcome it.  

And perhaps that is the greatest lesson having both a chronic illness and a chronic injury with severe chronic pain has taught me - never to quit.... and within that, never to give up hope.  One day, when I am back with the right people to help me and support me, I will win; we will win (there are more people than me invested in this journey - for them I am very grateful; but I need them.... and that's another post).  I will embrace my dreams, goals, and feel like I can take on the world again. One day.


I feel this truly expresses how it feels to fight Lyme
  and a chronic injury (/chronic pain).
I look forward to the day where I look at a fresh challenge and can smile.
( )
(It easily covers each individually! So double fight = double reward?! Please universe....?!)

"The danger is not that we aim too high and we miss it, but that we aim too low and we reach it."
- Michelangelo -

*Geek Moment:
*'we' - so the linguistic geek inside me finds this pretty fascinating..... it is very normal for someone with a chronic illness or injury to see it as something that is not a part of them and to talk about it either in the third person (N.B. This is not the same as just generally referring to yourself in the third person.  In some cases, it's batshit crazy.) or as something belonging to them: 'my shoulder was not happy today'.  It sounds a bit crazy, and when I became aware I had been doing it quite a lot (slightly questioning my sanity); I stumbled across an article on chronic pain that talked about it a bit (and said it was totally normal, not a little bit crazy!) I think it would definitely make a cool topic for a thesis (I declared 'geek' as a heading here, therefore 'cool' and 'thesis' can totally be used in the same sentence).

I've noticed other people facing severe health issues do the same thing too.  I just thought I'd clear up the use of 'we' as I do it quite a lot and I don't want anyone to think I've developed a second personality along with everything else.....  Personally, although I haven't really researched it much, the idea of separating yourself from an injury or illness, by not seeing it as a part of you, makes a lot of sense to me.  It's not the person I want to be, or how I want to be defined, but it does feel like a massive part of me, something that is permanently attached right now, so I do have to acknowledge it.  I think it's probably even more common in 'short-term chronic illnesses' - i.e. I fully intend to recover.  I do know that I may not ever get to 100% again, but I know I will improve way beyond where I am now with the right medical support and treatment. So right now, it is a part of me, and right now, I feel it defines me in some ways....... or defines the life I live (or don't live) right now.  It is a part of me; but not quite.  It makes perfect sense to me that it is psychologically healthy to see it as something you are living with, yet also battling; something you have to figure out a way to coexist, while also planning its ultimate demise, and your ultimate victory!

(If this explanation  has just made something you hadn't even noticed even more complicated.... #sorrynotsorry - it's good to exercise the brain! ;-)

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