My brain races around inside my skull as though it's competing in an ironman.
I can't stop it. I try. I make myself think about other things. I try to shut it out and concentrate on something mundane. TV. My furry boys. The weather. My toenails.
I'm someone who feels too much. Does that make sense? Likely not. I'm very emotional. I feel empathy easily. I want to help. To make things better. To change things.
I hate disappointing anyone. I hate letting anyone down.
However, what I've been told, and what I'm realizing is the truth, is that I'm the one I'm disappointing.
Because of the pressure I place on myself. The demands. The goals.
When I'm sick, I lay there in my own drool with nary the energy to lift my elbow. I slowly start to unravel. The typical stressors I place on myself fade away. Instead, they are replaced by exhaustion, pain, sometimes fear.
I've been dreaming a lot lately. Same reoccurring theme. I'm either in school or working and a project, paper or presentation is due. Either I've only just started working on it, or I've completely forgotten about it.
It's time. It's due. I'm up to bat and I've got nothing. My heart pounds. My breathing becomes labored. I'm clammy and sweaty.
I look around anxiously. Look for an out. A solution. Something.
And then I wake.
What does this mean? Do I even believe in dream interpretations?
One could correlate it to my feelings as of late.
My guilt for not being at work.
That is my biggest hurdle right now. And It was for the five years I spent on disability prior to transplant.
It's tough to convince someone who's convinced they are "different", who can handle anything, that what they need is patience. Time. Rest.
Mentally and physically I feel better. Of course I do. I'm out of lock up. I'm home. I'm not walking around in a daze. I'm not slumped over my bed, my body twisted from attempting to move.
I can function. I can stay alert. My eyeballs are open and taking in my surroundings. I'm happier. I'm alive.
My guilt encompasses exactly that. I can function. Therefore, I feel as though I should be more productive. I should throw myself back into work. Immediately. As soon as I walk out of lockup, I should walk straight into the office. Bury myself with work. Do something meaningful.
And if I don't, if I take the time to ensure I'm really okay (as it's still an ongoing process), I feel the guilt barreling down, choking me. Threatening to take over my life.
Why can't I just relax? Why can't I just do what I need to do to rest, continue with my medical tests and be as healthy as I can be?
Do I need to carve it into my forehead? A tattoo? Stare into the mirror and repeat "you are lucky to be alive" every day?
How does one drill it into one's head that one's health is number one?
I always understand this when sick. Well, I am better at understanding this when I'm sick.
Does someone own the secret to this?
I've been given this second chance, this new life...my new chunkers are so important and need to be respected.
Respected because they once belonged to someone else. Someone else who walked the earth. Breathed the way I'm breathing right now.
Someone who lost their life and selflessly donated these beautiful chunkers to give someone else life.
What's more powerful than that?
Maybe I should create a "Peope on disability" club, like AA, where we support each other and perhaps go bowling.