Honestly, this is the question, I almost always reply to in a lie.
As it stands, I am not generally much of a liar. I am a pretty open book when it comes to my life- good, bad & ugly. Words mean so much to me. My word is my bond. I don’t just throw words around in an argument to be mean or make a point. I try very hard to HEAR what people are saying when they speak.
I have mentioned before that I recently started therapy again to work out some issues that have crept back into my life. Who knows why they suddenly reappeared but they did and I am trying to be proactive in addressing them. It has come up in my sessions, that if you ask me “How are you doing?” I almost always say, “Fine.” and quickly change the subject. Why would I do that? Especially when I am usually being asked by people who know me and know my story; know I live with Multiple Sclerosis. Why would I down play whatever I am going through to people who care about me?
I am a very strong person who has made it through some very tough spots in life. I hate when people call me a “Survivor” I’d rather be known as a “Thriver”- whatever gets thrown at me, I figure it out and thrive in the chaos of it. So again, why do I lie about whatever is going on with me? What within me has made me start lying (albeit a tiny, small lie that hurts no one) about the general question of “How are you doing?”
After some discussions spent on this with my lovely therapist, I came to realize, I don’t ever want anyone to perceive me as weak- physically or emotionally. Physically, MS has taken away a good chunk of my mobility. Over the years, I have realized, people either don’t “see” you because your Disabled or they do see you and it makes them uncomfortable, so they ignore you. This really irks me.
We talked about ways I could have people “see” ME more clearly and one of the results of those conversations was this Blog. I already advocate for MS Patients in a few different ways and I love doing so but this blog can be more about me- Sarah. A 37 year old woman who lives in Southern California with her husband and 2 kids, a dog and 2 betta fish (in different tanks). I enjoy banana flavored things but not actually banana’s themselves. I am is crafty but I also want to learn Hand Lettering. I hate cooking but am totally cool with doing the dishes (A perfect combo because husband loves to cook for me.) My favorite color is bright blue. I am starting a weird collection of fun glasses (probably to be “seen” more as a person if you want to get deep about it.) Oh yeah, I also live & thrive with MS. I am is not embarrassed by this fact, I just want to be recognized for who else I am.
I also want to work on being more BRAVE. I guess maybe that’s my word for 2020. To be brave, I think one of the first things I need to do is stop lying about how I am doing. If I am having a shitty day, I need to say so. If I am so exhausted because it’s hot, I need to say so. If I am having an excellent day, I need to say so. And on days I just don’t know how to respond because it’s too much, I just need to say, I am trying to be brave today.
IMAGE: My son showing how strong he is.