Living despite fear


Three months ago - I laid on this table again to see where I was fractured. With two fractures behind me, I knew something felt wrong. When my PA showed me the X-rays, I was in shock. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me again. I wondered how many more times I’d find myself laying on this table every few years to see where my body had broken itself again. Angry, I thought, “why does this keep happening to me?” My PA and I talked about plans for healing this fracture and I held in my tears. Experience has made me a little tougher at handling life pausing news. Then I started asking him some deeper questions about my long term care. I think I cried harder than I ever have in a doctor's room.

I’m 24 (25 in two weeks) and I have a bone disease I have to deal with for the rest of my life. My bones are already breaking, and I am afraid of what my bones will be like when I’m 50. I start unraveling to my PA. “I’m so tired of breaking…I’m afraid I’ll never walked in New York City… I’ve dreamed about it since I was a little girl.. Will I ever be healthy enough to walk down a street in New York? I want to travel to London,” I cry and he tears up too. I’m fearful I’ll never get there and have those life experiences. I worry about my body breaking and/or being in too much pain to endure it. I’m fearful my best health is behind me at age 24 and I’ll never be better. My best chance to try to prevent my deepest fears about my body growing older is to keep myself healthy by eating well, exercises my muscles, staying flexible, and taking prescribed vitamins to give my bones the vitamins they reject. With tears in his eyes, my PA tells me what many people tell me when they hear my story, “you are so brave and strong for dealing with this the way you do at your age.” He continues by offering his advice for dealing with my fears and my medical condition - “You can’t let your fear keep you from living.”

This changed everything for me.

Although I have bad days and I still worry about my future, I’m more confident to live despite fear. I know I’m doing the best I can to give myself to best health, and I hope one day I’ll make to it NYC. I may have to take breaks every few blocks and rest on benches at all of the museums, but I can still experience it. Despite my disease, I’m still so capable. I can walk with both of my legs. I use my muscles. I wiggle my toes. And I can shake my booty when I want to. I’ve always been capable of doing this things and I’m more positive I always will. My disease isn’t life threatening, and for every fear I have, I have twice the amount of thankfulness for that. Living despite fear helps me be optimistic that my best days are ahead of me. This mindset shift is precious to me because it’s giving me an optimistic view for my precious life.

Three months on crutches has been tough on my patience. In one week, I go back to lay on the table and hope to hear good news. Even if I do need surgery, I know I’ll be even stronger after. I always am. But, right now, I am optimistic for the best.