A One Year Update About Me, July 2019

So since I started this blog just over a year ago, a lot has changed for me.

I decided to forgo traditional therapy as I had a toxic therapist, but subsequently went back to a wonderful one, but with my illnesses, it made it impossible to get there. Traditional therapists don’t leave much room for chronic illnesses that keep you homebound.

In nearly 18 months of spending most of my time alone and losing many friends simply because I was sick and no longer “fun”, I got a wonderful opportunity to learn about myself by myself.

These days I’m a paid writer and paid artist! Two things I never thought would come true so quickly with making those goals.

A year ago, I was very sick without many answers. I have now learned that 3 years ago, I had a bout of transverse myelitis. I’m currently diagnosed with celiac disease, gastroparesis, Chronic Epstein Barr virus, occipital neuralgia, degenerative disc disease, hereditary spastic paraplegia, and Charcot Marie tooth disease (a neurological disease, my teeth are fine). There are more issues due to having a damaged spinal cord, but you get the picture! With the help of an incredible medical team, they do their best to help me.

My invisible disabilities have turned visible as I walk with forearm crutches and a brace called an AFO on each leg. Next week I go for wheelchair measurements.

Instead of letting horrible chronic pain ruin my life, I decided to get out and live! I eat a healthy diet (much better for mental health over any pill I ever took!), I treat my body well, I truly found the meaning of yoga, even beyond the mat, and learned meditation will still get me past the worst of times.

I’m 43 now and my biggest goal is finding “causeless joy”. I still go on adventures with my now 12 year old adopted son and now 2 rescue dogs who have turned into the most loving saviors ever. They are named Napoleon Bonaparte and Sappy Stewart.

The only thing I’ve wanted to do since my transverse myelitis diagnosis was to hike again. My son and I have gone on several this summer, and I even did a couple alone.

I’ve learned to enjoy my own company and am finding a very small, but genuine circle of friends like I never have experienced. The more I express my love for myself, the more people express their love for me.

Some days are really hard with so many chronic illnesses, and I literally can’t move, but other days, I hike up mountainsides. It’s often strange to live in such physical extremes, but I work to find peace no matter what.

Despite it all, I’ve realized that I was miserable long enough by letting my developmental trauma and CPTSD affect me. Now that I’m an adult, I can choose to live as I want and even heal previously painful relationships and understand the power of forgiveness.

My blog has evolved to writing more about life with chronic illnesses and living well with that as well as having a diagnosis of CPTSD.

Life certainly throws its challenges my direction often, but I understand it’s the way things work and live with as much gratitude as possible, while recognizing it downright sucks sometimes and a good long, loud cry is a path to freedom from emotional pain.

So despite life is lived mostly from my bedroom, I am working on joy and creating a life I have dreamed of. I’m not letting my limitations stop me at all!

Peace and contentment to you

Lizzie