My very first post I wrote about how this blog would be my outlet. After this week I am extremely glad I do have that privilege, considering the fact that writing has always been a way for me to heal and overcome adversity. Today, I want to discuss the Top 3: Disadvantages to having a disability and the lessons I have learned from it.
For the majority of my childhood I’ve had to cope with the negative affects and effects of having epilepsy due to a brain injury I received while I was at the skating rink when I was young. I have not had a seizure for at least 6 years know nor have I had to take medication for epilepsy. I haven’t really discussed the disability I once had, but sometimes I feel as if I am still coping with having once had a disability. Through it all I most consistently remind myself of these three things below when problems arise.
1.) Remembering the important things in life - More than one time this week I’ve had experiences that have brought me to tears. I had been upset with myself for misplacing items that would have cost more money to replace. So, I cried from being so upset and frustrated with myself for not remembering important things. At my age, I should have no problem remembering.The hardest part is not knowing. Not knowing why I forget things as much as I do. Not knowing the effects of the many seizures I had while I was a child. And not knowing whether the medication I had been given by doctors has caused long-term effects that I still have to cope with today.
The lesson I have learned is: To take things slow. While somethings may be harder for me at times, I have to remind myself to just take things slow and my circumstances will get better.
2.) Basic and Simple task - Tasks that are simple and easy to do are things I have trouble with at times. As a journalist, this especially becomes a problem. Basic information is crucial to every story. If journalist cannot get the basic information in a story than more than likely his/her career becomes short lived. The other day, I was just reminded by an editor to try and remember to include the basic information in a story, and I immediately came down on myself for forgetting to include that information. I’m pretty sure it crossed my mind to include the information he was asking for in the story, but I became so involved in the story itself and all the details I wanted to include to make it a good story that I forgot about the basic information. In spite of him saying that I did a good job on the story, in my mind I didn’t. I always strive to do my best, so it is very disappointing to know that my best is not good enough.
The second lesson I have learned is: Never be too critical of yourself. It’s never easy to cope a disability nor is it easy to overcome. But if you keep trying to achieve your goals, eventually you will succeed. Persistence pays off.
3.) Equality - I’ve never been one to think of myself as having a disability, but the reality is I did have a disability. I believe most people who have a disability want to be treated as an equal. The ironic thing is, as much as you want to be treated equal, there are some situations when you placed on an unequal playing field due to a disability and necessary accommodations may need to be made. In spite of adversity, I strongly believe in the adage, you can do anything you put your mind to just like anyone else. Even if you have to accomplish things in a different manner, the only thing that matters is that you believe in yourself.
The third lesson I have learned is: Remember the positive things more than the negative. When you have bad days, deal with them accordingly, but don’t dwell on the negative. Cherish all the positive moments in life. Celebrate every victory, even if it is small. Smile in the face of adversity.