Today has not been a typical. In fact, the past three days have been a bit more upside down than usual. Grandpa would say, “Turn that frown upside down Shena-Weena.” At times that is more difficult to do than others albeit not impossible. Today is one of those days. As I sit on my couch looking at the beautiful day moving right along without me – a war wages within me.
It becomes increasingly clear with each year I age that my struggle with arthritis, secondary to Spina Bifida, will not get any easier. In short, Spina Bifida is a congenital birth defect in which the spinal cord does not develop as it should. Thankfully, due to advancing technologies & medicine, Spina Bifida is becoming less and less heard of. My case, though not severe, has been the source of some 28 surgeries in my 35 years of life, thus the arthritis. The pain associated with it renders me useless many days so I really really treasure the good days. Decreased mobility is an issue for many who share my diagnosis, including myself, which make a healthy eating routine paramount! Excessive weight gain further limits an already limited individual. Starting to see why gardening is so important to us? Those who know me personally know that most days I’m clueless as to my limitations but on days like today, there is no way to deny it. It is easy to feel sorry for oneself but I find that counterproductive! It never actually makes anyone feel better.
To those with limited physical ability, this is for you – DO NOT GIVE UP! Do not let anyone tell you what you cannot do! Find joy and happiness in small victories for the large victories are far and in between. This beauty (photo left) is planted right at our front door. So on the days I come home so drained I can barely lift my legs to get up the steps – this is what I see. I pause for a moment even through smoldering heat to take in its beauty. Though not fully mature, this unique Indian Heirloom has made my whole day better. In its beautiful silence, it made me smile. It is a quiet reminder that hard work pays off and success is possible, even for little ole me.