I have choices to make.
Spend the day grieving over every single loss, or take the leap of faith that God will place my feet on a new path.
I re-invent myself, I find those childhood desires that got lost in the business of growing up and being “normal”. I color, I paint, I write all the time like the little girl I used to be…hoarding my journals in an old trunk, filled to brimming with poems, musings, drawings, and the embarrassing chatter of youth.
I don’t worry about fashion anymore. I wear whatever the heck I want to. I don’t care what others think about my appearance, just as long as I am comfortable, happy and still beautiful to my Hubby.
Those outings out into the Real World are when my personal “collisions” occur. All the social etiquette that is required.
“How are you?”
“Oh, just fine and dandy! And you?”
I listen to someone’s complaints of a recent bout with the flu.
They got better.
I wonder what that must be like to feel better.
I realize I am staring. Oops.
That happens a lot. I am not out of the house much and when I do get out…I just LOVE to look at people.
The sales clerk…she looks a bit tired, she has on a little charm bracelet with gemstones for each of her grandchildren. Her face is aged. Her face is beautiful.
I stare at the children running down the mall to the food court. Oh listen to their pounding feet! And look at those smiles.
I stare at the harried woman carrying a huge handbag, trying to go somewhere in high heels and tight clothing cell phone attached to her ear, not seeing where she is going. Why does she do that to herself?
And then I see someone in a wheelchair. I smile and wave. I know how invisible you can feel when you have to ride in one of those things. The only people who pay attention to you are little kids in strollers who giggle at you…seeing a big person in a grown up stroller. Everyone else averts their eyes, or pretends you are not there
I guess the Real World may be a bit overrated. What have I actually lost in being forced to slow down for lupus? I have more friendships now than before. I have time. I have some solitude. I have quiet. I have a happy little family…they know where I am all day, and they know that I will be there totally excited to see them and be with them when they come home at day’s end. They know how eager I will be to listen to their daily triumphs and struggles.
I have a rich internal life. My mind has the space to explore thoughts. I have the luxury of spending an afternoon thinking about a dream from last night. I am able to savor a conversation, not having anywhere I have to rush off to.
Okay so I can’t go out in public very much. But, wow when I am out…I am so thrilled. I don’t feel put out, or stressed. I think GREAT…let’s have an adventure today.
When I go into remission…as I have every hope of doing… I don’t know if I really want to give up this little double life that lupus has given me.
I will happily live without the pills, the fatigue, the pain, and wondering about my mortality.
But, lupus has carved out a life for me that I never would have explored if I had continued on the path I had chosen. Never.
So call me nuts if you want to…if you haven’t figured it out yet, I won’t care…and I won’t take it personally…but,
Sometimes I just have to say, “Thank God for lupus.”