I cried yesterday.
We'll get to that in a minute. First, you need a little history on me. Those of you who know me well, are aware that I have epilepsy. I was diagnosed at twenty years old, but have had seizures since I was around twelve.
Because of the type of seizure I have, I struggled for many years, and through many types of medications to get control of my seizures, not only so that I could drive and not have to depend on others, but for my safety (the longer one has uncontrolled seizures, the more and more likely it is for that person to go into what is called status, which is scary, and exceedingly dangerous).
Because I spent SO long with uncontrolled seizures, that meant I spent an equally long time depending on other people to help me live my life. To and from doctor's appointments, work, social engagements....anything that wasn't within walking distance. I lacked independence and I felt like a burden.
When I moved to Wisconsin the transportation system here was much better and I was allowed more independence, but it wasn't until I was completely seizure free that I experienced true independence. Freedom. That nagging feeling of not being a burden on others was finally gone.
And then I was diagnosed with cancer....but I kept pretending like everything was fine. Like I was fine and could do everything like I had been. Like everything was normal. Because I don't want to lose that independence. I don't want to be a burden again.
I learned the hard way that while my cancer might not be making me feel ill, the chemotherapy is. It's taking a hard toll on my body and I need more help than I want to admit. I have now fallen asleep at work and needed to call my in-laws to drive me home once and more recently had an incident with my car that was REALLY scary (but luckily nobody was hurt).
I don't want to ask for help, but I'm learning that I need to. It's hard because I have learned to be fiercely independent. I still want to be the person that helps everyone else, not the one receiving help from everyone.
So, I cried at the loss of who I was.
But, while I was crying, I also remembered that this is just a moment in time, and I have every intention of beating this battle and becoming an even stronger person in spite of it. I won't let the hard days get the best of me. I just need to remember that it's okay to break down and cry, just like it's okay to ask for help.