#2013

It’s been four years since this photo and yet I get goosebumps just thinking about where I was at, both physically and mentally.

I was falling #sick with a cold or a stomach flu every other week, reacting to medicines which were supposed to help, afraid to be alone in my own bedroom, finding it hard to eat, needing help to wash my hair and sometimes even to brush my teeth, hating on my body for being fragile and weak, struggling to protect myself from people, fighting with school because they had no policies in place for people with medical issues, crying myself to bed every night, falling asleep with a strange emptiness in my #heart, waking up to feeling suffocated, hating on my creativity because I couldn’t pursue it the way I wanted to, feeling like every day was an absolute drag… I was claustrophobic in my own #body and #mind.

I wonder if this photo says any of that.

2013 was the year I knew I was done with everyone and everything around, including myself. Something needed to shift and I didn’t know what or how. All I knew was that life couldn’t possibly feel the way it did. Despite feeling like a hostage to my own #existence, there was a glimmer of #hope, a constant knowing that nothing was going to change until I decided to step up to where #life was heading. Stepping up at that point meant pausing and for once allowing myself to let it all sink in. Nothing was going to be anything like I had once imagined and I had to come to terms with that. I couldn’t distract or push myself anymore and I felt horrible. Who thinks about pausing/stopping at 23, right?

The thing is, some of us reach a point in our lives when we are faced with circumstances so real we simply can’t look away from them. Greater things are at play and our personal plans and effort make no sense. Life keeps finding ways to force us to look at what’s being presented and leaves us with two choices – to keep #suffering by avoiding pain OR to acknowledge pain and learn to #rise from there. #trust #acceptance #health #mentalhealth #pause #rest #recover

Looking back, I suppose there were things I had in 2013 which lead me to be where I’m at today. The daily struggle and fight have definitely added to all that I have become as a person and in some ways I’m grateful for it (not for the fight but for what came out of it). Of course, gratitude seemed like the last thing on my mind at that point in time because I was in this terribly dark space. Practicing and expressing gratitude, learning to accept whole and broken parts of me and making choices that honour my health (both mental + physical) has taken time and conscious work. I still have rough days but I’ve made peace with the fact that harder days are part and parcel of learning to live with a chronic illness. Today, I know better than ever before that while life is capable of giving you 5 reasons to fear, hate, complain, it will give you at least three reasons to trust, love and grow.

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Lunch-time salad

  1. Yellow capsicum
  2. Red capsicum
  3. Purple cabbage
  4. Sautéed onions
  5. Lemon Chicken (I cheated today and got it from an Asian eatery near by. That’s allowed when you’re really tired)
  6. Homemade Spicy Garlic Cream sauce (all fresh ingredients!)
  7. Roasted Sesame seeds
  8. Base of Greens and Herbs


With a multi-systemic disorder like EDS comes a very moody digestive system. I’ve always been such a breakfast person and for the last 5 months, I’ve been waking up not wanting to eat anything all. I don’t remember the last time I made myself a proper breakfast and enjoyed it like I used to. Not eating anything doesn’t work because there are so many pills to take and I end up forcing myself a little bit. Sometimes I skip breakfast (not by choice but because my body just doesn’t want it) completely and wait for lunch, hoping I’d be hungry enough. Like today. I’ve got more pills for later and it wouldn’t have made sense to go without eating any further so I made myself a decently heavy salad.

Let’s see, what do I have here…

  1. Baby Carrots
  2. Purple Cabbage
  3. Yellow Capsicum
  4. Sesame Soy Tofu
  5. Roasted Garlic Chicken
  6. Base of Greens and Herb Mix

And over the weekend, I made an Asian style peanut sauce  with spices and herbs too. To make life easier, I used natural peanut butter as the base. It turned out perfect!

This looks like a bouquet on my plate!