Hiding behind “everything is okay”
Over the past week I have done a lot of pondering. I realise that my blog started life as just a place for me to share my outdoor adventures, showing the world the wonderful places I have seen since I began geocaching in 2011. This was so that I could ignore what was really going on with me.
Last week I chose to evolve my blog and myself by hitting the nail on the head and coming out of denial. I have been battling hard with my emotions over the fact I am no longer able to do as much as I could before in every aspect of my life, and for a short while this really got me down. I took a conscious decision to go down the road of self therapy and allow myself to be happy, despite the limitations.
And happy I am. It’s easy to say to the outside world “yeah everything is fine” when really there is so much more you want to get off your chest. I’m done with the hiding, I’m done with the denial, that is so much more tiring and I really don’t need anything else to make me tired. So from here on in I am going to be open and honest with myself and those around me that I love and care about.
So where am I going with this post? Through my personal musings this week I finally came upon an epiphany. Sitting this morning chatting with a great friend over tea & coffee (and last night too with smif247) it suddenly hit me head on that although I thought I had been free of pain & fatigue for over a decade, simply going through the motions of life and work, the reality is I was hiding it.
Back in 2000 I took a risk to become self-employed. I was essentially a stay at home mum and I was bored (and tired). I invested £500 in to a variety of gift items; candles; incense; crystals & gemstones; essential oils; hand-crafted soaps; tarot card decks and set myself up as Luminesence “Light & Fragrance”. I built my own website, created business cards myself, set up on eBay and began combing local newspapers for fairs and events to sell my wares. I would work around the county during the weekends, travelling here, there and everywhere. During the week I would be Mum and recover from the weekends antics ready to begin again on a Friday. I stuck at it for 8 years. Eventually giving in to the pain. I put it down to the weight of the boxes I was lifting in and out of the car.
But as I looked back at this happy time in my life (believe me I loved the social aspect of a trader) I began to realise that the pain I was enduring wasn’t due to the lifting at all. You see I was not a weakling and had reasonable upper body strength, you have to when you’re still subjected to carrying toddler’s on your hips. So what was the pain? I remember all too well because I am still suffering from the same nagging dull aches in my elbows, knees and lower back. I am still subjected to the burning, throbbing pain in the joints and I still (on tired occasions) get the pushing, twinging sensations as though being poked repeatedly.
So although I thought I had gone into remission all those years ago, I was actually living in denial. It was only when my entire body decided it was going to crash and burn that I had any idea of what was happening. It has taken me 18 months of unbelievable exhaustion and pain, a course of cognitive behaviour therapy and immense support from friends and family to finally get to the stage where I am ready to accept my lot in life and talk about the highs and lows.
Now that I am there I am now in a kind of limbo. I have spent so long just “coping” I am not sure which direction I am supposed to be going in. On the plus side however I do feel much more alive and have a much better outlook on life. It really is too short you know! So I grab opportunities with both hands and jump in with both feet trying very hard to ignore the pain and just spend tomorrow recovering for the next part of the journey.