My Journey With:

Hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (hEDS) ~ Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) ~ Focal Impaired Awareness (Complex Partial) Seizures ~ Fibromyalgia ~ Chronic Myofascial Pain (CMP) ~ Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) ~ TMJ Dysfunction ~ Bipolar Disorder Type I Rapid Cycling ~ Migraines ~ Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) ~ Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) ~ Keratosis Pilaris (KP) ~ Complex-Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) ~ Panic Disorder ~ Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) ~ Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) ~ Nonsuicidal Self-Injury (Self-Harm) ~ Piezogenic Pedal Papules ~ Hashimoto's Thyroiditis ~ Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) ~ Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) ~ Specific Phobias ~ Chronic Headaches

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

I am many things

I have been thinking a lot about identity.  So many people who are chronically ill lose their identity in their own illness.  I am determined to never let that happen.  While part of my identity is being a spoonie and an EDSer, I am a lot more than that.  I want to talk about who I am, so that on days I am depressed, I can look back at this list and say "Hey, I'm cooler than I thought!"

  • Wife - I am the wife to the most awesome person in the world. My DH is my best friend, my lover, my partner in life, and my soul mate.
  • Kitty Mommy - I am proud as could be of our kitties.  I show their pictures off everywhere.  Whenever I am sad I only have to look at our kitties and I am smiling again.
  • Feminist - I believe in a woman's right to chose control over her own life.  I'm not referring only to abortion, but also to what career path she takes, and being able to express who she is on the inside.  
  • Liberal - I love politics.  I love arguing politics with my DH, who is a conservative, the most.  I stand behind what I believe and I know why I believe it.
  • Peace lover - I abhor violence of any kind.  I find myself saying "Can't we all just get along" a lot.
  • Spoonie - I identify with others who have chronic invisible illnesses. My spoonie friends and I communicate online.
  • Zebra - I identify as a zebra because that is what we EDSers call ourselves.  This came from the phrase doctors are taught in medical school "If you hear hoof beats think horses, not zebras."  For those of us with EDS (a rare disease) we need the doctor to think of zebras, not horses.  Does my explanation make sense?
  • Writer - I love to write.  If I go an entire day without writing I feel lost.  I've been writing since I was eight and won my first writing contest.  I've won statewide writing contests, as well.
  • Pen paller - I love the old-fashioned art of pen palling.  I believe that pen palling is becoming a bit more popular again.  I have pen pals all over the world, including in my own country, the USA.
  • Crafter - I love making something beautiful with my own hands.  My favorite crafts include cross-stitch and embroidery.  I love to crochet but I really need to refresh myself, as it's been awhile since I've crocheted.  I also am going to try to teach myself to knit.
  • Lesbian - I identify as a lesbian, not bisexual.  DH is the only man I've ever been really attracted to.  I love DH more than anything, and want to be with him while we turn old and gray together, but that doesn't mean I'm not attracted to women.  (Don't get me wrong, DH is a very good looking man!)  I am in love with DH regardless of his gender, not because of it.  So, while I had recently come out of the closet when I met DH, it was still love at first site.  No one has the right to tell me my sexual orientation and I don't have the right to tell anyone else what their sexual orientation or gender identity is.
  • Spiritual - I see myself as a spiritual person, on a spiritual journey.  I plan to do my first Pagan ritual soon, as I have every intention in becoming Pagan (probably Wiccan).  NOTE: Most Pagans don't even believe in the devil, much less worship him.
  • Book collector - I have around 600 books and am always collecting more.  This one goes along with being a voracious reader and writer.
  • Postcard collector - I have postcards from all over the world, courtesy of my lovely pen pals.  I have a lot that are just so awesome, I don't see how someone could throw them away.
  • Scrapbooker - I love to scrapbook to document my life; both the good and the bad.
  • College Graduate - I got my Bachelor's of Science in Business Administration-Accounting with a minor in English at Columbia College.  I graduated in 2009.
  • Beginner Gardener - I have already started my seeds and replanted the seedlings.  I hope to have beautiful pictures to show you soon!
  • Recipe and Cookbook Collector - I've been collecting recipes and cookbooks since I was a teenager.  I have a little of every type of food I can think of, though I have mostly Taste of Home cookbooks and Weight Watchers cookbooks.
  • Star Wars Nut - I cut my teeth on the original Star Wars.  I'm jealous that I didn't get the option to rule the galaxy with Darth Vader because I certainly would have taken him up on it.
  • Harry Potter Lover - Harry Potter represents to me all of the things I didn't have growing up--namely loyal friends.  
  • Animal Lover - I love all animals, though I admit to getting scared when DH's friend's dog growls at me when I carry my cane.
  • Poet - While I do not write poetry professionally, I do write it privately and occasionally share a poem on a blog.

Not only am I these many things, but I plan to be more in the future.  Some of my plans include:

Future Grad Student - I hope to get into grad school online in the fall.

Future Mommy - DH and I want to be parents so bad.  DH will make a wonderful Daddy and I hope that I'll be a mother as good as my good friends Om and Mandy.  They couldn't love their kids more, and they are great parents.  They discipline their kids appropriately (they do not hurt them) and the kids know that they are loved.

Future Freelance Writer - I have only got one job so far as a freelance writer and it paid $25.  I want to pick up some projects here and there, but due to disability I can't do much at a time.

Future Novelist - I'm not sure what my future novel will be about, but I will be participating in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) this year.

Future Homeowner - We plan on moving out of state before we buy a home or have children.  It's got so many things wrong with it.

This last one isn't really the same thing, but I wanted to include it anyway.

Waking up to a future clean house - I think that speaks for itself!  Clutter, clutter, clutter!  Hey...I can dream, can't I?

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