How do you keep your identity when you feel like you have lost part of yourself? How do you not become your illness? I do not want to become known as the lady with CRPS or that lady with the weird leg. I want to be known as me. I want people to be able to see past it and see me for the person that I am.
With CRPS you cannot help but feel like part of you is lost. The things that you enjoyed doing and that made you, you, have been taken away. You have lost part of your identity. There is a lot of grief involved. Grief for what is lost, and what will be lost in the future. You have to let go of some of the dreams and aspirations you had set for yourself, and adjust to the new normal. Do not be afraid to grieve what you have lost.
CRPS, depression, anxiefy… these things are only parts of me that make up my giant human jigsaw. There are so many pieces. Each one is different, but they all fit together to create me. The pieces constantly change, are lost, or replaced. There are so many parts of me that I want to change. Some of the pieces I can. Some of the pieces I can’t. These pieces are glued in place by my DNA. We cannot ignore what is happening inside us. It is impossible and the consequences of trying are detrimental. We cannot let it consume us though. Not everything we do has to be because of what we have. Do things that you want to do, that bring you joy.
I got to go to see P!nk this week. She is absolutely amazing. She is brave. She is bold. She is an inspiration. I have heard her songs a million times over, but they are different live. Her song “Perfect” gets me thinking…
“You’re so mean when you talk
About yourself, you are wrong
Change the voices in your head
Make them like you instead”
This is so true for everyone, whether they have a mental illness, disability or not. We fight so much in our own minds to be perfect. We feel that we have to be perfect or society won’t accept us. If we could just change this part of ourselves then we would be perfect. If I could get rid of CRPS… if I could only not have a mental illness… But where would that stop? Who decides what perfect actually is? Chances are even if we could change these things we would find another flaw. Its human. We tell our children that they should not be afraid to be different. How can we keep doing this if we don’t lead by example? We are telling them what they need to hear but without showing them it’s ok, we are continuing the cycle. Just because you are different, does not make you any less perfect. It makes you a perfect you. We cannot compare ourselves to anyone else.
“Done looking for the critics ’cause they’re everywhere
They don’t like my jeans, they don’t get my hair
Change ourselves and we do it all the time
Why do we do that? Why do I do that? Why do I do that?”
We believe our identity is based on what other people think of us. We have to fit in that perfect little box that is wrapped with a perfect little bow. But really, the only opinion that matters is our own. We have to accept ourselves. We have to see our flaws for what they are. They are just pieces of our jigsaw. They do not define us. Even Mary Poppins was only ‘practically perfect in every way’. She wasn’t completely perfect. A barbie doll is only perfect because she is made of plastic. Instead of thinking about all the things we should be, think about who you want to be. Who are you?
It is important not to give up completely on what makes you, you. Find a way to modify the things that you love to do. If it’s not possible, find something new. There are infinate possibilities out there waiting. All you can do is try. If you fail, get back up, dust yourself off and try again. Don’t lose your identity because of what you have/may not have. Embrace who you are. Be bold. Be amazing. Be you.
#CRPS #complexregionalpainsyndrome #anxiety #depression #breakingthestigma #identity #perfection #bebold #beamazing #beyou