Knowing Your Limit

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I can’t say that I’m an expert in know my own limit, but, at the same time you know yourself when your body is just saying no. As a person with a chronic illness, I’m used to being told “listen to your body”. That’s all fine and dandy, but, then they tell us to “fight it”. Would you make up your mind and just pick one!

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Personally, I find it hard to tell when my body has had enough sometimes. Now and then it could be obvious because I’m either not feeling well, or I’m just so tired that fighting it is not even an option. Before I was diagnosed my body was completely drained non-stop, I just assumed I was lazy and that I lacked in the fresh air department. If my friends were to ask me if I’d go here or there, usually I’d decline. My body just didn’t want to move. For the most part, I’d want to go with them, but, my body had other ideas.

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At this time, I had no idea what was wrong; I didn’t even think anything was “wrong”. Then I was diagnosed. Pieces of the puzzles started to come together. No wonder I couldn’t stay in college for a whole day, no wonder I could sleep all day and night and still not feel refreshed. I realised that I was plagued by fatigue.

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From then on I started seeing things all over the internet saying “don’t let MS defeat you”, “don’t let the MonSter win”; that kind of shite. I didn’t want to be the girl who was always sick. I don’t want people to take pity on me because I have to cancel plans due to my health. I don’t want to use my diagnosis of MS to stop me from doing what everyone else is doing. Unfortunately, there are and will continue to be obstacles for me. I won’t be able to stay up until all hours of the morning partying, I won’t be able to go without a nap during the day; I won’t be able to concentrate as well as others. I know these examples might seem small to you, but, they’re a big thing when you have to watch everyone else do the stuff you want to be able to do.

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I know that I have a limit, everyone does. For me, it’s a little different. I could wake up tomorrow morning and not feel like getting out of bed, but, if I push my limit I can get up and I can get dressed. Simple things that “healthy” people take for granted. That being said, the past few weeks have treated me pretty well, so the getting out of bed part isn’t that much of a struggle at the moment!

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I know that I have to pick and choose between things, it’s either go to the football match or go shopping for a few hours; one or the other. Sometimes I try to push myself a bit too far. I want to be “normal”; I want to be your regular 21 year old girl. I want to go to college and attend all of my classes, I want to meet up with friends and family whenever I want to not whenever my body wants to. I know that my body is begging me not to do it, but, I want to at least pretend for a few hours that I am completely ordinary.

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Sometimes it feels like I might be missing out because I’ve reached my limit and I physically can’t do much more. I don’t want to fall behind or be left behind because of this stupid disease. Occasionally, you can feel like a bother to people. Let’s say I go out to meet a friend at 7pm, but, by 8pm physically and/or mentally I can’t keep up so I have to go home. It sucks. All of this being said, ultimately, no matter how hard I fight it, my body will always win. It can leave me feeling lonely and sometimes a bit isolated, but, I guess I just have to go with the flow.

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I’m not “normal”; I’m not a regular 21 year old. I have a chronic illness and it’s important for me to accept that and to move forward. I might not be up to much, but, I’ll do what I can when I can. Keep the head up, stay positive and concentrate on what you can do, not on what you can’t. Some people might not fully understand why I can’t go here or there, but, tough shit! They’re opinions don’t count and that kind of thing. I’m still learning where my limit is and when to realise that I’ve reached it. It differs from day to day. People who don’t care don’t matter and those you matter don’t care.

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