Re: Where I fit in??
Hi there Dub1, I Think I know exactly what you mean, and it's not a good feeling. I hope we're on the same page. While I have an abundance of disorders/diseases, it was the bipolar that shoved me out of society and made it hard to even make friends. I always wanted a career, and worked while ill, but frankly, I wanted a typical family life (husband & especially kids) more than anything. Now I find myself with "nothing" -- no job, no husband, no kids ever. I don't feel like I really have any normal place in society whatsoever. I enjoy volunteer work, when healthy enough to do it, but I'm still in my own private Idaho, with no friends who understand bipolar, only my docs & therapists understand. This hits people with disabilites of all kinds, all the time. It's bizarre --most people start this life planning on so-called normalcy, and then at some stage, if disabilities strike, all the plans and dreams just get wiped out. What a rotten gig it can be, and the only way to change it, I think, is to redefine what a successful life means to You as an individual. The best advice I ever received on this topic was from a gal (disabled) who gave me a nice little speech that made sense: The main point of it was to Never judge the success of your life based on typical societal norms, but rather your ability to have days that brings joy to you, that are as productive and joyful as you can make them. If the day is filled with nice hobbies, or even just peace of mind(!), then good for you and all of us who are burdened with medical hardships. Healthy people simply don't face the same challenges we do, so we shouldn't judge ourselves (as people with disabilities) by the same criteria. Just being "different" and/or ill is a challenge...Fitting in to the normal societal structure may not be any proper measure of success, but if we can define success as making the best of things, to the best of our abilities, then a Happy Day is a success unto itself. I hope this makes some sense -- I'm having what I call a "bad brain day", perhaps not the best time to try to share. Take Care!