I was thinking last night about what it’s like to have a disability for me. The best way I could think of to sum it up was that it’s like my mind thinks one thing and wants one thing, and my body is either capable or completely incapable of doing those things. In most cases, it’s incapable. I don’t know what it’s like for someone that’s able-bodied, but I imagine in most cases, it’s so automatic you don’t even notice or think about it. You want to go up some stairs, so you go up them. You want to get up off of the floor, so you do. I know that doesn’t mean you can do everything physically your mind wants to necessarily but it’s very strange to have your mind and your body not be in sync. My mind completely thinks I can do anything and should be able to for that matter. So when I go to try something that maybe I just can’t do physically, or something that’s hard…my mind gets frustrated. My mind – and myself – want so badly for my body to just follow what my mind is telling it.
Maybe this is why I live in my head so much. It’s what I identify with a lot more than body. My body sometimes seems so separate…so alien to me. For many years I didn’t even care to take care of it. Why try to make a body healthy that was already inferior to begin with? I was already weak and likely to get weaker…why even bother? I’ve since changed my attitude on that but maybe I need to align my thoughts with my body a little more. Maybe I need to be more compassionate to my body to begin with. I get so angry sometimes when I drop stuff on the floor and have to bend over (sometimes painfully) and pick it up. I get so frustrated when things are difficult that shouldn’t be because they aren’t for other people.
I don’t know that I’m truly at a place yet where I believe deep down that my body is just as ok and valuable as someone else’s. I still feel like it’s damaged or like I was born incomplete because of my disability; something I of course would NEVER say or think about someone else with a disability, but I think about my own self. The one person that will be with me always.
The world isn’t always kind so we need to learn to be kind to ourselves. This is something my mind needs to learn when it comes to my body.