“I have to do this and this and this and this and then there’s that trip tomorrow…. I mean, it’s fun, but it’s still a lot, you know?”
All I could do was nod my head. What could I say? I remember what it was like to be so busy and feel like I couldn’t keep up, but my friend was talking about how he was so busy, that tomorrow’s day trip would be overwhelming. The day trip that he and other friends of ours take every year. The day trip that I want to go on every year. The day trip that I miss every year because of my health problems. The day trip that he could say no to, but chose not to.
That was the hard part for me. I just kept thinking, “You could always say no.” I remember being in that place, and feeling like I couldn’t say no to things. Now I see what a luxury it is to have the choice! Because even when it’s something you really want to do, you can always say no. But you can’t always say yes. At least, I can’t always say yes.
There’s a certain perspective you gain when your body is constantly stopping you from doing things you want to do, things that your peers can do effortlessly. I wish I could explain it to my friends. I see things so differently now. It’s not necessarily better, and the cause for it totally sucks, but it’s different.
It’s easy to say what I would do in the same situation, but the truth is, there’s no way to know. Maybe it’s be just as over-committed as everyone else seems to be. All I know is that right now, I sure wish I had the luxury of choosing to say yes to invitations. I just hope everyone else remembers they have the option of saying no.
Thank you for your post. It’s hard to watch everyone rush by complaining about how overbooked they are when illness constantly make saying yes difficult. It took me a long time to see the lessons and gifts in the chronic life. Being able to say no was impossible before my illness. Now, it’s pretty common. I’m sure there’s a balance in all of this. Keep writing and keep exploring the edges of this complex chronic life. Lisa @ http://www.bodyinflamed.com
Lisa, I will say that over time I’ve found it easier to find a balance that works for me. Sure, some days are easier or harder than others, but mostly I’ve found something that works for me. I hope you find what works for you, too soon.