Lessons I Am Learning
I decided to take advantage of the beautiful weather outside today. I am sitting outside with my cat Nicholas. By the way he is basking in the sun and watching the birds, squirrels, and kids running amok in the joyous spring dance. I love spring. For me what I love the most about it is the visions I get of renewing, starting again, and rebirth that it represents to me. The fact that flowers bloom, baby birds chirp, while their mothers gather food and build nests, and trees get buds and bloom to a glorious spring green does help me in this thought pattern. Lately, I have been giving a lot of thought to renewing and rebirthing.
This morning I woke in a peaceful state in which I have not done in a long time and it got me to thinking about how my life has changed this whole year. I will be 38 years old literally in one month and so my thoughts were this: Wow, look at where I am in my life right now. Where do I want my life to be at by this time next year? How do I get there from here? What is my purpose? What is it that I want to accomplish before I am died? First, the option of me ever being a mother is gone, since I have GPA and have all the medications to take being pregnant would not be a good thing for my body at this juncture of my life. Yes, I love babies, who doesn’t, but somehow I knew this all along in my life and felt odd when as a teenage girl I started planning weddings and naming children that I want to have with some fantasy life that I knew would not be for me. So instead of giving birth to babies and getting married, what are my other options? For this last year, my sole focus of my life is getting healthy. There is no cure for GPA, but it can be managed. And I am in the managing stage, learning what managing a rare and deadly disease means to me and what I want to do and what I am willing to do to maintain a health. What that looks like right now is taking medications that leave me feeling tired, bloated, thirty, running to the bathroom all the time, and the dreaded acid reflux, but I am not willing to lay down and say kill me now. I fight on and I am doing a darn good job at it. I am learning to accept the fact that I become tired and I have to rest. That I cannot run on auto pilot until my gas tank is empty anymore. I cannot over indulge in potato chips, cheese, and my favorite from Voodoo Donuts that amazing bacon maple bars any longer. And I especially cannot engage in toxic relationship with individuals who do not wish to be in a relationship and are not willing to take responsibility and communicate with me in an honest and loving fashion. I know a lot of I cannot is in this paragraph and thought process. I have found that I am one of those rare individuals who look at all angles of a relationship from what I am doing to contribute to the dysfunction and realizing that I am to blame just as much as the other person is. I am grateful that at this poignant stage of my life I have many people who not only are willing to do the same thing, but who have shown me that they are sincere and appreciative of what my qualities are. That is a huge step on this journey I am on.
I have been learning what it is that I can do despite living with a trach and with GPA. One thing I know I can do is still be creative in the kitchen. I now am a proud owner of a juicer and I have gotten creative in what I am juicing. Thankfully, Myron loves to juice and he is willing to put my concoctions together for me. I have noticed a difference since I started drinking fresh juice. The only constant ingredient that I put in all my juice is ginger. Ginger is supposed to be great for inflammation. I believe it is working, at least my energy level has gone up since I have been drinking juice, so that is one thing I can do to help maintain my body living with GPA and my trach. I can drink and make juice. I am also able to watch movies, plant flowers or herbs, love on my cat, write, and take pictures of things I find interesting. I am also able to take webinars about my disease and research. My capabilities are not distinguish just because I am sick. I am learning to take care of myself through all the stages of my life and therefore that is the challenge, but it is a lesson that I needed to learn. I am thankful for my disease and all the loses that I have lost in the last couple of years.