When I first started to recover from my stroke, I didn’t want to allow myself to believe that my disability would prevent me from my dreams. At the time, I hadn’t realized the full truth of my being. I was still believing in the illusion that a life without epilepsy meant that I could be physically active again. I set high standards because I didn’t want to fall into dependency and neglect the go-getter in me. I had made a vow at the start of my journey to persevere and to meet each challenge openly to live a full life, not letting circumstances become prevention.
As I strived to meet my high standards, I slowly got to know my body and started to recognize that the dream I held since epilepsy entered my life was simply an illusion. As this reality formed, I realized how working so hard and aiming for what isn’t there drained my energy and risked bringing epilepsy back into my life. This realization brought the rush of memories to the forefront of my mind, and I realized how most of my accomplishments in life were done by compensating mentally and spiritually for what physically was not naturally available.
Slowly accepting my reality, I realized that I had been lying to myself and others for thirty years. No matter what I did to improve my person, I lived with a shame I couldn’t shake because subconsciously I knew it wasn’t the truth.
As the truth blossoms, I am now able to recognize the accomplishments I’ve ignored and the ways in which I should administer self-care. Asking for help, aiming naturally and choosing to enjoy simplicity brings peace and adds to who I am. I am no longer afraid of not being enough and can live happily without being endangered.
What I couldn’t let go of when I was eleven years old crafted my character and brought me a variety of experiences and blessings, but now it’s time to admit that I no longer wish to work hard for what isn’t there. I’ve spent enough of my life working too hard and it’s time to enjoy what is.
I don’t like knowing that I’ve lived a lie for thirty years but I can’t regret my life because of all the treasures I’ve been offered. It is no longer a matter of I can’t do things, it is now because I choose to accept and enjoy. Reality isn’t what we think it should be, reality is what is and we have the choice to appreciate it.