They tell us a lot of things in life: That if you go to school you will be successful. That if you exercise you will be healthy. That if you eat right you will feel good. They tell me that I have POTS and if I take my medicine, eat lots of salt, keep hydrated, and exercise I will recover and someday may even not have it anymore. However what they don’t tell you is how emotionally hard it is, how physically draining it is, and how mentally frustrating it can be. They don’t have the experience to tell you that you will go through months at a time in your lowest of lows where nothing seems that it could ever possibly get better. They don’t tell you that you will have to fight with everything you have in you even some days to just get out of bed. They don’t tell you this because they don’t know. They don’t know that as a teenager surrounded by so many others you have suddenly become different and that a diagnosis can change so much of your life. That a label to what has tied you down for so long has suddenly become a definition of your flaws and you are thrown into a categorized system. It’s very hard to look back a year ago to see a image of a girl that used to be me and notice all that has changed. It gives you a shaky feeling; happy you’ve made it so far, but terrified at the same time as you wonder how long it will be until you are that healthy child once more or if you ever will. They don’t tell you that without going into the battle for health with full force and hope then you will be knocked down. I’ve always wondered why doctors never told me how long it would take for something but I realize now it’s because they don’t know. Maybe that’s the problem, we just don’t know how to fix everything and some things are more important than others but everyday is worth surviving.
Drive: to strive vigorously toward a goal or objective; to work, play, or try wholeheartedly and with determination. The drive to do something is very interesting to me, maybe it’s just the human mind in general and the capability we have to create such a drive for something.They said that recovery would be hard, that it wasn’t going to be easy to train a very weak broken down body to build it’s strength once again. Gosh were they right, so very right. Trying to develop a strong body again is hard, it is so hard. Maybe I would use a few different, more harsh words to convey to you just how hard it is if I knew my grandma, doctors, and oh so thoughtful mother wouldn’t be reading this, so I guess hard is a pretty good way to explain it. You see for many they assume the drugs will fix it, that then you will return to your old self, you will be healthy and you will no longer suffer. Maybe I believed that for a while too but living on drugs can be a pretty miserable world and one can only assume and anticipate the day their body creates a tolerance and they no longer work. I guess at that point in time you cross your fingers and hope there’s a cure soon but let’s be honest, we are currently in a world where treatments for some cancers have been the same for over 30 years let alone introduce some crazy syndrome most have never even heard of. So maybe that’s when you start losing the faith in the drugs and you take to what you are capable of doing on your own, because if nobody else can find the magic fix after all it is your body. They say exercising is the key to fixing so many things in a sick life but what they don’t tell you is just how hard it is. The swift pedaling of a bicycle that for so many years was such a no thought action take for granted, it’s natural you just pedal. It turns into a science in a sick body as you think about each movement you are making; left right, left right, you feel your chest get heavy and your lungs squeeze to give yet another breath as your muscles contract sending you forward. The first 3 miles are the hardest I think. It’s difficult to teach and to understand that pushing yourself is okay when so many other times it seemed so much more acceptable to just sit down when things got difficult. Maybe it’s the fact that this whole sick thing is getting old and coming up on two years now and I would really just love to be able to walk up a flight of stairs without getting winded or maybe its just the anticipation of what’s to come and knowing if I don’t fix things now it can only become harder. I’m not sure I realized how broken down I was until I hadn’t made it out of my neighborhood and I was already ready to turn back, little did I know the guy in front of me calling the shots (my father) had mapped out 7 more miles ahead of us that together we would ride, not with the intention of making me better but rather just getting out and doing something he enjoyed and I too was eager to go back to old times that we used to spend together. It’s hard to keep up with someone that can ride 30 miles in the snap of a finger and more times than not I’m sure I looked like a puppy dog trailing behind. The Tears that ran down my face from what I blamed was “the wind” but really was the drive inside and the 10,000 different emotions occurring knowing that a year ago I couldn’t even walk from the couch downstairs up to my bed. Maybe it was the pep talks I gave to myself that went something like “Man Mer you;re kicking butt!” (maybe I used different language but you get the point). I think it’s so important to acknowledge the things you do accomplish in every day life because if we don’t find the little things that we accomplish we will never have the drive to move forward with anything. I’m so thankful for all of those that have stood past me the last 2 years and created a drive because man giving up has seemed so much easier so many times but somehow there’s always been something that has kept me going. 2 years later I find confidence in knowing that I am not healthy like most, I have a very long way to go, but I am stronger, stronger with an “ER” because everyday is a new opportunity with endless chances to become stronger wether it’s physically or mentally and everyday the drive becomes more of an accomplishment and the light at the end of the tunnel shines a little brighter. And maybe the tunnel was a bit snowy today and maybe 10 miles is just a few more than 7 but it is more and everyday there’s the possibility of more.