My feelings regarding my disabilies are manyfold, they have varied in intensity from time to time, I have not always felt
positive about it either. My sense of self worth has plummeted many times. I cannot say that you will feel any or all of my
feelings, I explain them, just in case they may help you, feel you are not alone in feeling as you do, or maybe, hopefully,
that you feel that you are dealing with your disabilities in a better way than I have.
My first reactions to my disabliites
were that of frustration, of not being able to care for my family as I thought I should. As I was younger then, I felt that
it would probably be merely a temporary setback, so found it easier to accept after a while. Then after I had recovered
from my laminectomy, I was so relieved to be pain free and active again, that I tended to forget just how
limited my life
had previously been.So I carried on my life as if I had always been fit and active.
As years went by, and my condition
deteriorated, I seemed to accept my limitations, always finding a way around things, okay, so I couldn't do a thing this way,
then I would do it another way!
When my condition became such that I could walk only a few steps, and stand for only
a few minutes, my life became very restricted, I had to ask for almost everything to be done for me, I hated this (and still
do), so didn't ask until I could wait no longer for it to be done, unrealistic really, because by then, I would need it done
almost immediately, which did not always fit in with my
helper and his needs. After lengthy discussions on both our needs,
I have learnt now to ask freely, yet not to expect it to be done immediately, unless necessary.
When I was active, I used
to be known in the family as the "fixer", ie if a thing was broken, or needed altering, I could often fix it. Not
being active now, means that I cannot do this, so have lost that role, something which I have to learn to grieve over, as
this is as great a loss to me, as any other bereavement, and should be considered as such.
I have felt that I am almost
a "waste of space" as I cannot give much to my family, or the community, something I also have to learn to accept
as not being the case, I still have lots to give, though in many other ways, I just have to
find them, and put them into
action, hence this website!!
Since having to spend most of my time sitting, I have learnt to use a computer, and though
still no expert, I have been able to help friends and family members, to learn to use theirs. I have made e-mail friends all
over the world, and have shared thoughts and experiences with them, they have now become very dear to me,a blessing which
my disability has brought me!
I have now to learn to allow others to look after me instead of being the one who looks
after others, this I must consider as my gift to them, it will help
them to feel good about themselves, if they can be
of help to me. I remember how good I felt when able to be of help, now they can have that feeling.