Photo by Jamie Nix
Sometimes I wish there were things I could take back, redo, or do differently. That some choices I made could be changed…where would I be now? What would my life be like? Do I really want some different rendition of my life now?
I want to, and have learned, to appreciate life now and what I’ve done to get here. I did not imagine where I’d be today 10 years ago…5 years ago. I cannot possibly foresee where I’ll be in the same time it took me to get here!
I hear about 5 year plans and the importance of envisioning where you want to be/see yourself in 5 years…what are your goals? I worry about the future and the things that I cannot control. I try to make my 5 year plan, but I keep coming up to the same problem…I miss me…I want what I was 5 years ago. It’s torture every time I think about all the ambitions, the power, the thrill I had then compared to how I feel now. I was invincible and empowered!
I made some choices to put others before myself and forgot about my happiness and self-love…and now, I have MS. It’s really difficult not to be furious with myself for forgetting about me all those years…so difficult not to push myself deeper into my self-destructive hole.
I feel, now, that I have been put in this situation to address this exact issue. Confront my thoughts and find myself…love myself…as I am, and be me rather than missing me.
It is really wonderful to reminisce and be proud of accomplishments, for everyone. But, those ARE just the beginning to something more and ARE NOT the only moments to be cherished. Life doesn’t just STOP when you’ve been happy once. In fact, life is ever-changing…molding to events like the brain’s plasticity while aging or after injury. The body compensates to function at it’s best in what condition it finds itself. And we, in life’s events, must mold to fit where we find ourselves and push the boundaries of the factors that limit our potential.
A 5 year plan may be one way to start. I am still going to work on mine; with the goal of I can’t wait to be me! Because everyday I AM me…I can’t possibly miss me. The time I miss was specific to that situation and I was NOT limiting myself. I can’t miss me, because I’m still here. My mobility/disability doesn’t “define” me or what I am capable of…Of course, realism is important for goal setting, and at this moment I cannot run. But, to give some perspective, last summer I couldn’t do jumping jacks and now I can! It wasn’t easy, but it was a goal and I had to stop comparing myself to what I could do 5 years ago.
I think maybe, as a stepping stone, I’ll begin with a 1 year plan and move from there. MS has an unpredictable course, like life for anyone really. But I am deciding on patience today. To love myself and all I AM capable of. I will not be my limiting factor!