The weird things we all do

I’m the one that has to die when it’s time for me to die, so let me live my life, the way I want to.

–Jimi Hendrix

Last night I sat at my computer typing away at an email, completely unperturbed by the fact that I had on fuzzy black/pink/red striped gloves (with aspercreme on underneath, naturally).  My family thought a) that it was totally funny, and b) something I should post on Twitter.  Being me, that is exactly what I did.

This morning I got up and checked facebook (twitter crossposts there) and was surprised to see a ton of comments on that post.  I “came out” this year with my RA in public spaces (my close friends & blog readers knew about it, but my real life people, not so much).  A few people in my town like to ask questions, so I fielded ones like “what is aspercreme?” and “why the gloves?” (I have small children and they don’t need aspirin in their systems).  But the one that really got to me was “Why are you even typing if you hurt so bad?”

I didn’t answer that one.  Not there.  There are things that would take a lifetime to explain and this might be one of them.  I don’t know.  I thought I’d give it a shot here, though.

I type when I hurt so bad that tears leak out of my eyes and I’m so cranky that I can’t speak to my loved ones because it is something that I can control.  When words flow out of me like this, I am not the person limping from room to room or the person cringing because someone touched her elbow, I am just me and these are the thoughts coming out, not the pain running through me.  I type because someone asked for something from me that I could give them in a way that causes me the least amount of pain.  Words can pass between us without the pain getting in the way.

I can’t quite get this out clearly.  Yes, the typing, the actual process of holding my arms out like this with my elbows bent like this and my shoulders held just so and my feet flat on the ground and my ankles bent just so and my hips holding me upright just the right amount and my wrists moving back and forth and fingers moving to and fro, yes, that is what hurts.  But this, this communicating, that is what I live for and what I won’t give up no matter how it hurts.

We all go out and do things that aren’t comfortable for us.  One of my friends in high school didn’t like walking anywhere alone, but she manages it every day.  My mom doesn’t like making phone calls, but she manages to talk to the people who work on her house and her yard when she needs them to come out.  My middle son doesn’t like leaving me every morning, but he manages to go in to school and have a good day.  You probably have something you don’t feel comfortable doing, but you do it anyway.  Well, so do I.

We weren’t put here on earth to be comfortable and most of us aren’t in some way or other.  We all have things we’d like to have different or do differently.  Well, I can choose to sit at home and moan about my pain or I can do something else.  I’m always going to choose to do something else, even if I have to do it in a different way than I’d prefer, like wearing gloves while typing or wearing sneakers when I’d rather be barefoot (oh how I love being barefoot!) or wrapping my ankles so I can take a walk every morning or taking a huge number or drugs to stay upright rather than staying all natural.  Sometimes we just do what we have to do and get on with it.

I’ll be the one over here typing with her gloves on.