This moment has been replaying in my head lately (but not in a crazy, I'm hearing voices kinda way). In an odd way, having ALS provides a sense of freedom that I have never experienced before.
For the most part, I have spent my adult life unconcerned with what people think of me or my actions because I know that I live life my way and with a solid moral compass of my own. However, there are certain things I have either shied away from or flat out refused to try or participate in, mainly out of fear or stubbornness. I think it is fair to say I am a person who expects a lot of myself and, therefore, I am my own harshest critic. Since receiving my diagnosis, I have let the walls fall away and have allowed myself the freedom to try new and different things.
Earlier this week I had my first real sushi meal. I've tried a small bite before to make my husband happy, but this time I went all out. I ate salmon rolls, eel, tuna rolls, a tempura fried crab roll, yellow fin tuna and an avocado/tuna roll. If you know me at all, you know that I simply do not eat seafood, cooked or raw. However, I faced this meal with the freedom to allow myself to enjoy it, not holding my nose and making scrunchy faces … and it was good! I liked it, for real, and I am excited to try more new fishy foods next time, which will probably be this week if I know my boys.
|My first oil painting|
|Elephant Leg Vase|
I have been making pottery for almost a year now which I have really enjoyed. Yesterday, the studio (Dixie Pottery Gallery) had a big sale and students were invited to include anything they were ready to part with in the sale. My normal reaction would be that my pieces wouldn't be good enough for people to spend money on. However, I decided to give freedom a chance and placed five pieces for sale. Of those five pieces, three sold and I am oddly proud of that.
|My Walk to Defeat ALS flyer|
There are other examples I could share, but I think you get the idea. The definition of ALS is to lose control of all voluntary muscles and, therefore, become completely dependent on machines and other people. Yet, in the process of living with ALS, I am finding, of all things, FREEDOM!