Paralysis is hard. There really isn't another way to put it. The exhaustion, fear, and quest for independence are stifling. Just when I sit back and take a breath after accomplishing a hard fought task, my body makes a stance, informing me that I am, in fact, not in charge. My body wins every single time. It wins so often, I find myself escaping quite a bit. I set out with a plan and a list for the day only to be interrupted by a two hour session of caring for some unforeseen occurrence brought on by my lack of function. And after I clean up or pick myself up, I am simply too exhausted to continue. Sometimes I can't emotionally handle what just happened so I turn to one of my varied escapes. None of my escapes are unhealthy, just mindless. They usually involve an episode of Real Housewives or Mad Men or Downton Abbey, perusing the internet for celebrity gossip, reading a few chapters of a book, or watching a favorite movie. My healthiest escapes involve walking my dog, cooking, working out, stretching, listening and reading Wayne Dyer, or meditation. Usually after some indulgence, I am over feeling anxious and ready to move forward and conquer another task. However, now that I am feeling well again, I want to stop escaping so much. Part of becoming healthy and progressing is learning to live with the not so comfortable parts of my life and learning not to allow them to throw me off course. I need to sit with them as they come and move past them when they are over. Sometimes a little anxiety is healthy because it teaches me to cope.
The season opener of this season of Mad Men ended with the line, people will do anything to relieve anxiety. It's true. Anxiety is uncomfortable. Since this line continues to stick with me, I thought about it in many, different ways and came to the conclusion that yes, anxiety cripples me more than I am already, but sometimes it fuels me to change. So, instead of quickly relieving it, I decided to make a few changes. Because I still must heal two wounds left from my awful infection, that last and final step of my recovery, I need to pressure relief most of the time. This requires a lot of time in bed. I try to use this time wisely, refusing to give in to my escapes. Today I chose to make a new 'well schedule.' I filled it with positive escapes that propel me instead of hold me back. Rather than allow a particular instance to put me back ten paces, as I like to say, I am vowing to deal with it and move on and stick to my 'well schedule.' This will take a great deal of self discipline, but I am ready for it. I added an extra block of meditation because silence is key and never ever overrated. I am also determined to publish more on this blog. I want to document my progress and see if there is actually progress happening. For so long, I've felt robbed of a regular life, but now I feel more determined than ever to take back what I feel I've lost. If something happens to throw me off course, I decided to allow it to happen, process it, and choose to move forward instead of escaping from it. I know I won't win every time, but I am willing to try. And I do feel some escape is healthy and I worked some in to my in bed resting, pressure relief schedule. Basically, scheduling my relief instead of taking it whenever and wherever I need it. I am writing all of this because I need to be accountable. I need to visit this blog as often as possible to record my feelings and progress so I don't become defeated. All of you wonderful readers and supporters are my witnesses. I will check in as often as possible and share as much as I can. I may not always want to write about schedules, in fact, I probably will write about them the least, but I want to write more to keep myself sane and on track. I want to get as much out of life as I can, when I can, and how I can. Especially now that I am able. I am ready to win this race with myself, even if I am the tortoise, especially because I am the tortoise. I work so hard not to succumb to the downfalls of this life in a wheelchair and I want to try harder than ever to keep going. It's so hard to have life changes come and go and be left with the aftermath, but putting the pieces back together, painting a masterpiece with the splatters and stains, well that is so rewarding.
Please excuse the hodge-podge of a post. I just needed to write this in order to start my new well life. Now, I'm off to finish grooming and bathing my dog, Belle. She loves this new life. Ha!
See you tomorrow.
*I am in no way commenting on anxiety disorders, panic attacks brought on by anxiety, or depression anxiety. I've experienced all of the above and it takes a lot more than simple escapes to alleviate or even curb these anxieties. I am only writing about my general, day to day anxiety.