Why is this title contradicting?
I wish it was a simple explanation and something easy to talk about, but rarely in life is anything easy anymore.
Since being diagnosed…I’ve had to give up so many things. Things that in my mind, defined who I was. I had to give up my job, my home, my income, my passions, and my free time. I’ve had to modify my parenting skills, choose my battles, decide what is worth it, I’ve had to modify my duties as a wife, my ability to clean and cook (let’s face it, I was never a good cook), and my ability to provide for my family. I’ve had to cancel dates with friends and family, I’ve had to spend hours upon hours hooked up to IVs, while traveling from one doctor to another. I’ve had to literally give up all of the things that I thought “defined” me. I’ve had to swallow my pride and apply for disability, and I’ve had to resign from a job that I so passionately loved. I’ve had to give up so much in order to maintain where I am at today. Not to mention all the sacrifices that those around me have had to make also.
Now, let me tell you why I’m not GIVING up. Yes, I had to give up and let go of a lot of things. One of them which was extremely hard was admitting I wasn’t able or ready to return to work. But, I am not giving up this fight. I am not going to let this disease rob me of everything and those things that I have had to sacrifice are HUGE, but in my mind, it is worth it. Why is it worth it? Because, what good am I to any of my students if I can’t stand for long periods of time? What good am I to my students if I can’t be there every day for them? What’s more important at this time in my life? That’s a really hard question. But, I am first a wife and a mother and a survivor. So, I had to make the choice, and I will admit it was a hard pill to swallow. But, at this point my health and my family come first. I need to use whatever energy I have left to teach my children right from wrong, to show my husband how much I love him, and to set a good example for my family. It’s not that teaching isn’t a huge part of me or a huge priority in my life, it’s just that at this time I have to pick my battles and at this time I NEED to be there for my family more so than for my students.
I recently had to submit my letter of resignation and as hard as that was, a weight has been lifted from my shoulders because I can now focus more on my family and myself. It pains me to think that I will probably never teach again. But, I have NOT given up on the fact that there is something out there for me and when I am healthy it will be waiting for me. I know that I will make a difference again, even if it isn’t through teaching. I will make an impact and I will change lives. But first, I need to focus on me. I am better…don’t get me wrong, but I’m not where I want to be yet. My time will come, but I am so saddened that I will not be returning to work.
Never in a thousand years did I imagine my life would turn out this way. Of course I want to feel sorry for myself, wallow in my tears and regrets, but I know that isn’t good for anyone. So, I am giving up a lot but I am NOT giving up.