//keep moving forward

Eight years ago, I went on my first water-slide and eight years ago, my jaw popped uncomfortably for the first time. Since then I’ve dealt with on-again, off-again jaw/head/neck pain. It was so infrequent that it didn’t really bother me, up until about six months ago when it became constant. My jaw wouldn’t sit straight, I couldn’t open it without feeling it crunch and pop, and pressure headaches would get so bad sometimes that I couldn’t focus on anything, and I would need to lie down and sleep it off. (If you know me, this is a fairly big deal as I’ve never been a ‘napper.’ Everyone else in my family can nap like a pro and enjoy it, but I’m very averse to naps. I never like sleeping when I could be doing something else, and I simply can’t relax enough to nap unless I’m thoroughly exhausted.)

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I’ve been to a chiropractor twice now, for x-rays and diagnosing, but today I actually got my atlas put in. Afterwards, I went into the back room to lie down and listen to Hamilton for half an hour, and when Georgia (she makes the chiropractor visits all the better) came to wake me, I stood up and nearly fell over. I then proceeded to bump into two walls. I was then ‘measured’ by the chiropractor, who announced that for the first time in eight years, my legs were the same length – hence my balance issues. (I was cheerfully informed that said issues will go away, once I grow accustomed to standing like a normal person.)

I have chronically shaky hands, although I’ve learned to be a good shot, and I don’t let it interfere with my drawing (although on some days it’s so bad I really can’t draw anything. And it’s not hypoglycemia – just something I’ve had since…well, forever). My right forearm was dislocated last year, but I kept drawing with it since I had commissions to complete, and whenever it starts to ache I have to wear a brace to keep it from dislocating again.

My dyslexia has worsened recently, rendering a large portion of the words I write backwards or jumbled (and it gives a lot of hilarious typos).

Why am I telling you all this? I suppose because I turn twenty-two this year, and I don’t think any of you know these things about me. I don’t really talk about physical discomfort and I don’t usually even let myself think about it too much – everyone has something, after all, and dwelling on discomfort can be a great waste of time. But I’m also telling you this because I don’t want you to stop or quit. I know many of you deal with far worse inconveniences and issues than I do. But pushing through these bumps has increased my productivity and confidence in ways that feeling great all the time wouldn’t have. When I feel like throwing in the towel, I think hey, if I could draw for a week with a dislocated arm, I can do this. Or yo, if I can shoot a perfect cluster with shaky hands, I can totally do this.

So, in the immortal words of Shia LaBeouf, just do it! (DON’T LET YOUR DREAMS BE DREAMS.) Because I’ve learned that giving in and not doing things on a particular irksome day makes me feel worse than if I had, every time and without fail. Here’s to forty weeks of chiropractor visits, legs that are the same length, and sketches with shaky lines; and here’s to taking life’s lemons and making lemon tarts with whipped cream.

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11 thoughts on “//keep moving forward

  1. ‘taking life’s lemons and making lemon tarts with whipped cream’. Love that. Thank you for this post.
    You’re fantastic, m’girl. Always.

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  2. You know, last night, my dad and his friend were talking about this same thing. His friend has diabetes, asthma, some missing teeth, knee problems for a while, back/neck problems; he stutters, and can’t always think of the right words to say, but he plays the keyboard (can’t read sheet music), works hard, sings, is an amazing cook, and pretty smart.

    He has all the problems in the world to complain about, but he doesn’t. He’s happy as anything and does whatever he wants. He accepts the things he can’t change and moves on. I think that’s amazing + I think you’re amazing for realizing that these are small setbacks – and only setbacks if you allow them to be.

    Keep it up, Melon. xoxo

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  3. I am well acquainted with our friend the chiropractor :) I hope/pray it helps, and that God grants you healing for your other ailments as well. But, He always gives us strength to carry our burdens for each day, and He can use even the brokenness of our bodies for good. I have chronic neck/back pain, a host of other muscle and joint aches, and weakness in my upper body (all stemming from scoliosis and a slight muscular disorder). My brother has the same problems, only a good deal worse. My wife has asthma and occasional stomach problems (as well as being spectacularly accident prone). Our bodies, in this world, are sin-sick. All the more reason to rely on God for grace, and to look forward to the day when all of us, from the healthiest to the most crippled, will inhabit eternal bodies of health and vigor!

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  4. This is so encouraging to me!
    And you know, I’m decided that writers who fight harder to keep on keeping tell worthwhile stories

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  5. Look up Pete Egoscue’s books “Pain Free” and “Pain Free at Your PC”. I hurt my back recently and he’s the reason I can get around again — still struggling with it, but you’re right, pushing through these things is a must. :) The stuff Egoscue says makes a LOT of sense. Totally read it! Sorry you’re going through all that, darling! I hope you’ll feel better. <3

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  6. I’m sorry about the pressure headaches. I sometime have sinus headaches, (I spend time going to the chiropractor every so often to get my atlas in. Seems to be headache instigator for me.) I have had super pain headaches you have to sleep off so my sympathies with you. I’ve had a jaw that pops and cracks ever since I got braces as a teenager. Sometimes that has to get put in too. Reading this I just felt that your courage to move beyond and keep going, makes your soul all the more beautiful.

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