Today I got a lovely message on social media from a friend who underwent ‘stomach stapling’ to lose weight, she wrote that she looks and feels fabulous. I was so thrilled for her!
I love seeing my friends happy and also love being able to cheer them on as they achieve their goals… and then it occurred to me… I miss being in control of my own body!
I believe that something many able bodied people can’t grasp is the concept of being in control of your body and it’s abilities. They are committed to the idea that we simply lack discipline and drive. When I confront this attitude I tend to sigh and heavy sigh, shake my head and think ‘…don’t waste your precious breath’. I wish it didn’t have to be like this.
In healthier times, if I wanted to try and lose weight, I was able to modify my diet and then exercise; hard. I would swim 50 laps of the pool and go to the gym every other day. It felt good. I felt in control. But this isn’t the case now and it is incredibly hard to accept.
People will often assume those with autoimmune diseases, where many of the causes of our disabilities are internal (nerve damage, bone damage, gastro damage etc), are just not dedicated, not committed or not trying. It is a common misconception by those who have the benefit of better health and bodies that comply.
The fact still remains that I would dearly love to be have more control of what I can do and what my body will allow me to do, and it’s like torture that I don’t.
Whilst I genuinely delight at the abilities and achievements that so many of my friends, and loved ones achieve (and I consider it an honour to be able to celebrate with them) it is always in the minds and hearts of many Autoimmunes, and particularly those who are particularly affected and limited by their illness, that we too would like to be in control of our bodies and able to reach our own goals.
Learning how to live without control of your own body is a never ending battle, trying to educate others society is so much harder… but it shouldn’t have to be.