Spurred on by a chance to see Dave Matthews play three acoustic shows in small venues, I decided it was time for me to travel by myself, just for the experience. So I spent last week traveling around England and Wales alone. What began as a flight of fancy became a personal challenge and a chance for reflection.
I’m proud to say that I had a great time and made it out unscathed. More important is that I wasn’t waylaid by a headache or related symptoms even once.
Less than three years ago, I spent five days a week in bed. Last week, I drove around England and was fine. It took extra effort (I ate good-for-me foods regularly, rested frequently, didn’t pack too many activities into each day and took drugs when I needed to), but I succeeded. And what an accomplishment it seems.
Some of my ponderings:
- I’m the happiest that I have ever been.
- Although I spend more money on my “job” than I make, I’ve never enjoyed work more.
- I’m not pain-free, nor will I likely ever be. And that’s perfectly OK.
- I’m still independent and self-sufficient.
- Needing people to help me is not a weakness, nor is wanting them to.
- Indulging myself is just as important as indulging the people that I love.
I hate to say that being sick gives me perspective on the world; it just sounds dumb. But I can’t avoid the cliche because it is so true. Hooray for self-indulgence and the reminder that illness doesn’t have to eclipse our lives.