In Pursuit of Happiness
Real Talk, In Pursuit of Happiness
Inspired by Four Incredible Women
A.K.A The Knifies
The last thing anyone wants is to get sick. To stay sick. To hit insurmountable walls. And to be left alone, standing there, with your old life in one hand, and the reality of it now in the other, not knowing what will happen if you let the latter go. If you give the unknown a chance.
If you drop everything -and right now, that could very well be the only choice you have.
I stare at my phone, watching text after text come in. Reading, absorbing, and lingering on every. last. word. I take it all in, not really knowing what to say because they said it all - or maybe they read my thoughts? Read the patterns of my mind as I try to take on this crazy, unpredictable, and wild stage of my life.
A stage where my dreams pile up almost as high as my medical bills. Where the idea that I've had to push a pause button on my life eats me up inside. Where the thought of trying to enter back into a world my peers, of the hustle and bustle that they take part in every day, scares the crap out of me - and I briefly think that I might not be able to do it. I actually shudder thinking about it...
And that shudder. That fear. It's not because I'm weak, it's because deep down I realize that that life I had wanted for so long, might not be the life for me.
I look back at my phone. I see the names and messages of some of the people I admire most piling up in my inbox. It doesn't matter that I've only ever met half of them once, and it doesn't matter if I never do (though that would break my heart) The point is, they don't let you give up, and not just that, but they give you a million reasons and one why the person that you are now is unstoppable. Is creating a life out of fight. Out of unfortunate circumstances. Out of an illness that breaks you down and eats at you from the inside out. That is if you let it - and we don't.
We are forced to face our innermost selves at a time that hurts most. At a time of extreme vulnerability. At a time where we feel unsure and insecure about who we are as people, and who we doubt we can become.
It's a hard choice to make, but you can make it. You can decided whether or not it's worth it. Whether or not you are "sick" or "healing." Whether or not you will keep fighting, or give into the idea that the life you've lost is the only life you ever had - that all is lost because you no longer have that amazing job, get drinks with your peers, or run every morning at 5 a.m.
Here's the thing. You can still live a magnificent life while fighting a chronic illness. You can still kick butt and take charge. Get things done and fulfill dreams. You can still do all these things because you are capable - scratch that - because you are MORE CAPABLE than you've ever been in your entire life.
Sure, this illness is limiting. But it also forces us to be real, honest, and open with ourselves. It forces us to get "emotionally real" with our inner demons. We are forced to decide what makes us happy, because if we don't find what makes us happy, then we will lose the love, the joy, and the adventures that come from living. And we really don't want that, for a million and one reasons.
The way in which I view the world now is entirely different to how I saw it two, three, four years ago...
Instead of viewing happiness as something given to you through a good job, steady relationship, and fancy apartment, I view happiness as something you have to actively fight for. Something you can never take for granted. Something that forces you to be vulnerable, forgiving, and loving towards the people that lift you up and move you forward. Towards yourself.
Happiness is found when you learn how to love the you now. The real, raw, and vulnerable you.
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