Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Appreciating Life With Dystonia

Looking back, I can't believe all that I did before I received my Botox treatments 6 years ago...before I even knew I had Dystonia. I sometimes glance at photos and cringe as I focus on how tilted my head was. I can actually feel the pain I was in, as if it was just yesterday. What still baffles me is that not many people noticed the odd positions my neck was in. They tell me that they only knew I was in pain because my hand was always touching my neck and rubbing my neck all the time. All you Dystonians know the miracle of that "sensory trick". I still find it so amazing how that with one slight touch of my hand I can calm my muscles...well, at least for moments at a time.

Dystonia is a horrific disease that causes physical, mental and emotional pain. I want nothing more than a cure to be found, just like all of you do. There are moments I try to think of all the trauma that I've been through in my life...bumping my head, falling off a horse, car accident, etc...trying to come up of reasons why or how this could have happened to me. Then I stop and think of the little ones who developed Dystonia, who hadn't had the chance for any traumatic injuries to happen to them, why did Dystonia happen to them? I become exhausted thinking of reasons why and trying to research everything that was posted on the internet from doctors, hospitals, and clinics.

So, what do I do on a daily basis? I appreciate the life that I have. I appreciate waking up in the morning, hearing my husbands and son's voices, and having my cup of coffee.  I've learned to adjust or eliminate the people or activities that are not working for me anymore, and have learned to bring peace and joy into my life. I appreciate things that I see (faces of family, friends, blue sunny skies, and bright colors of flowers) and don't worry about the things that I can't do (certain yoga poses, lifting weights/heavy objects). I also make it a habit to push myself to do anything or everything on the days/weeks I'm feeling really good. On the days I'm not feeling too well or I'm extremely tired, I've learned to use those moments for reading or meditating.

What things do you do to make your days more comfortable, happier or exciting?