Just over three weeks ago I received the 2nd of my two iron infusions. I felt the difference after the first one and even better after the 2nd one. I could not believe how much better I felt and how much I could do. After being so tired for so long it is great to have my energy back. Not only do I have more energy, I can concentrate and focus, hold and be involved in a conversation, read and sleep well. I can once more go out for coffee with friends and re connect with my social circle. This connection with my social circle, who are also part of my wonderful support system, is very important to me. I could not believe how good it felt to be able to function.
Then one day reality hit, again!
The reality is that I wanted to do more, but I could not. And, this was once again, a reminder of my illness and why I am on disability.
With regards to my mental health I am the healthiest I have been. I think back to the times I did not know if I was going to make it to the next hour, let alone the next day. I think back to the time before I was correctly diagnosed and thought I was truly losing my mind. I know I have overcome insurmountable odds and am grateful to everyone who has helped me get to where I am now. But I still get frustrated that I have limits, and cannot do as much as others seem to do. I also get frustrated that even though things are much better, my life is still pretty complex.
I have been physically preparing for my upcoming Outward Bound trip for the past two months, what people have not been seeing is my inside preparation. That has been going on for years.
When you have D.I.D. nothing is simple!!!!
This course is going to push me beyond my perceived limits, emotionally, physically and mentally. While this is not a survival course it still will be challenging. The instructors are very knowledgeable, accepting and supportive, and they will make sure I am safe at all times. I know this, the adult part knows this, but some of my other inside folks are not too sure.
I will once again try to explain a very complex concept.
There may be some of you out there who may be very sure of who you are, and are very successful at what you do, know your own mind etc. But when you go back to your childhood home for Christmas or other family gatherings, you turn into that kid and the family dynamics kick in as soon as you walk in the door. You may feel like you are in two worlds, one world is the present, the confident, strong, level headed person you are at work, life and your home, the other world you are thrown back into the world of your childhood and old roles, hurts and triggers. Your emotions flip flop from the confident adult, you are, to that kid in your family dynamics. Its takes energy to keep things under control, try to deal with the brother who always puts you down, mother who picks at you etc.
Welcome to my world! I, and others with D.I.D. have more than two aspects/persona's that we have to deal with on a daily basis.
I had coffee with a friend the other day and told her that packing and getting ready for this course is like preparing and organizing a daycare, so many needs, need to be met.
Although I have been doing very well, I have parts of me that may get triggered if we get wet and cold. I have sent Outward Bound a safety plan, and they have sent a copy to the program director and the two instructors.
During the intake interview for this course, the director told me that last year they had a person on the course who was D.I.D. and she switched every few minutes, but they knew ahead of time and a safety plan and supports were put in place to allow this individual to be successful with their program.
My safety plan also gives directions on how they can support me throughout the program and what to do to help me if there is an emergency like a car accident etc.
This week I have been thinking about what to bring for my talisman, - kind of like good luck charms or sacred objects that hold some significance for me. It’s been a bit of a challenge as “everyone” wants their say, and to bring something, but we are going to be carrying a 60 lb pack in the Rookies, it’s not like I have a lot of room. It has taken some time but I think I have come up with a few small things that will please and support everyone.
I won’t even get into the issues I had to deal with as some parts were upset because they felt left out when I was buying new gear for the course…like I said, it’s very complex and nothing is simple!
Yes, reality bites at times. But, I know this is my reality like it or not. I can fight against it and be angry and pissed off all the time or I can learn to accept it, work with it and do the best that I can do. I guess you know the one I have chosen.
I also know it could be a lot worse!
Like I have said before, this has not been an easy journey, but it is worth it. I could not have imagined that I would be getting ready to go backpacking for a week in the great Canadian Rookies.
I am taking this course to learn more about myself, who I really am and what I can really do. I am taking this course to meet challenges and put some old ghosts and “cognitive errors” to rest. I am taking this course to celebrate how far I have come and dig down a little deeper to find that authenticity that is me.
And while I am doing all of that, I will also be honoring everyone past and present, alive or dead who have helped me to get where I am today. They may have played a big part, or just a very small role. They may have been in my life for years, or it may have been just one chance meeting, or not know me at all.
I will honor them all.
Yes, my life is challenging and complex and that is my reality.
I also know,contrary to what I was taught, life is also full of wonderful experiences, the world can be safe, I can trust people and I am very much loved. I know that while I am on the 24 hour solo component of the course, I may be on my own, but I will not be alone as many people will be holding me close to their hearts and thinking about me.
That’s the reality I choose to focus on!!!!!!
I am looking forward to this course, and yes I have some trepidation, but that’s normal. I know I will be safe and supported and it will be an experience of a life time. It will be a voyage of discovery and I will come back with many treasures and wonderful tales to tell.
These are my thoughts and I look forward to telling you about this amazing trip.
I wish you all well in your journeys and may you find many wonderful treasures.
Until next time
Cheers and be well