Remember my post a year ago about asking for questions to answer on my next blog post? Well, 365 days later, 6 posts ago and some juicy content, here it is!
Three awesome questions:
1. Do you still see people (old friends, distant family) who aren’t aware of your current health situation? Or do most people seem to know by now, thanks to social media?
2. When you dream at night, are you walking about and in perfect health? Or is Sylvia a.k.a. the walker in your dreams?
3. In a dating world that happens so much “online” (vs. in person), how do you approach telling someone you might be interested in about your health? What’s the typical response?
1) Distant family, I would have to say 99% know about my life with FA. Maybe not the full extent of what FA actually entails, but for the most part, they do.
Old friends, most know–I think?? I’ve had a few run-ins with some I hadn’t seen in years and a couple of them had no idea and a couple (thanks to social media) knew I had “something,” just unsure what.
It was tough to admit and speak the words “I have Friedreichs Ataxia…,” but over the course of time I’ve accepted it’s my new ‘norm.’ I actually really enjoy spreading awareness and knowledge about it, so it doesn’t have to feel so foreign.
2. Funny you ask about my dreams, because I get a kick out of the lack of Sylvia. Most of my dreams are me walking /running unassisted. Although, in my dreams I usually think it’s so odd I have good balance and coordination because I know I have FA. There’s been a few dreams where I stood up, walked about and said “I better bring Sylvia, just in case.”
A dream in particular, I was doing a walk thru of a home I was purchasing and I did just that- walked throughout the entire home. The house had stairs to the top bedrooms and two steps leading to a big gazebo from the living room sliding door. And they weren’t just your typical steps; these were uneven cobble stone steps. And to mention, this home was in Barcelona. I surely hope this is a sign🤞🏼. I said to the real estate agent: ” Well, I passed my test of being able to walk through this house, climbed up and down the stairs and did it without falling…boom! I’m buying this house today!”
Dreams are dreams to be turned into reality, right?!
Ohhhh, the joys of dating. The unforeseen territory. I’m glad I had someone be blunt about asking this.
I was actually planning to designate an entire post to the ins and outs of dating since there’s so much ground to cover here. Buuuutttt I’ll just go for it…
Dating as a mom is not that easy, but throw a disability in the mix and it’s a whole new ball park. I haven’t really felt ready to start dating up until last year. I took a few years to just concentrate on Eli and myself.
I am pretty sure I’ve heard it all. The excuses that make you go “really? That’s what you got to say?” I’ve had some lie straight through their teeth. Some be completely honest that they can’t deal. Or the sweethearts in the bunch that overlook my disability; like me for what I am, not what I have.
The ones that are total cowards try to make conversation dull, ask or say the worst things, make something up of why they suddenly can’t meet, or block my number.
Or the ones I actually have respect for…a man who can come forth and openly admit they aren’t interested because of FA. Sure, I may get butt hurt about it, but at least they’re honest.
These encounters are before I actually get the chance to meet him. I instantly get judged. They may think–they’ll have to take care of me physically, emotionally, and/or financially. Little do they know I take care of myself on all those aspects.
I love being active. I go to the gym and do yoga throughout the week. I love watching live sporting events, being outside – parks, trails, walks (strolls in the wheelchair), soaking up the sun and fresh air by a pond, lake, river, beach…
Doing what I can with my son withOUT help from others.
I finacially provide for myself and my son’s dad and I, both, provide for Eli. It may be minimal, but I’m a simple gal. I do not need sparkle or glitz. Just give me a jar of bliss.
And physically…I’ve been handling myself with FA, pregnancy and a child on my own. No, I don’t literally mean all by myself. My friends/family/Eli’s dad were and are there; but I mean on my own as a mom who is single and has a disability would…it’s tough; and I tip my hat to all you other separated/on your own parents.
I really don’t like using the word “single mom or single dad” unless you are literally doing it 100% on your own without the other parent. Most probably disagree with my logic on that, but if both parents, together or not, are in the picture that doesn’t sound singular to me…sounds like a duo. Just sayin’🤔
So, I’m a mom first and single second. That’s my two cents and I’m stickin’ to it. 💁🏻
I’m sure I referred to myself as a “single mom” in previous posts, but I was just following suit of the term people seem to use so lightly. I’m waaaay smarter now😉
Anyway, back on track with my dating life that would probably make a great book one day. Embarrassing🤦🏻♀️
Here are some real, no filter, responses I get after I tell someone I have FA:
– Can you like get dressed by yourself?
– Can you cook? Because I want a wifey to take care of me. Not the other way around.
-Can you drive?
Legit question. I ain’t even mad about that one.
– Can you have sex?
Welp, I gave birth to my child.
– I want someone more active. Like with their legs.
– We just wouldn’t be compatible.
-That’s not what I’m looking for.
-I’m so sorry. You poor girl.
-I can’t give you what you want or need.
What exactly do I “want? Or need?” Because you sure as hell never asked me…
-You won’t be able to keep up with my life style.
– I’m sorry. I just can’t handle this.
And my favorite…
-We literally have this great connection already, but now that you told me this…I just don’t know. I don’t want to force feelings.
About 90% of these comments I don’t even respond to. If they “feel” this way enough to say it, I do not have any desire to keep this convo going.
I can’t give ya all the bad without sharing the good because there are some great ones too…
– You’re amazing just the way you are.
-You’re beautiful, smart, great personality and disability doesn’t even matter.
– Your attitude and perspective on life blows me away. I am still very much interested.
-FA doesn’t define who you are and I like everything you are.
– You have more confidence and positivity than an able bodied person…I admire the hell out of that.
Kind hearted guys are still out there, but the stars haven’t aligned just right yet.
I’m not going to lie…I was very hesitant to be this raw, but I’ve been putting everything on the table through my blog these past years, so I may as well keep it going.
Also, rereading this, it sounds like many guys! 🙈 Some of these comments came from the same person and to be clear, I am not a serial dater. I’ve only been on a few dates that I actually enjoyed and one that I dated steadily for a few months.
These questions below are some of the reasons why I never even tried to date once FA became more apparent…
Do you think people with disabilities don’t date or can’t find someone who’s actually interested in them? Are people with disabilities a burden or unloveable? I’m not offended if those thoughts ever ran through your head because, as above, I stated these were questions I used to battle with. Why would anyone want to be with someone who uses a walker/wheelchair? It makes me look so less sexy. Why would anyone want to be with someone they may have to pick up when they fall or help them down the stairs?! I didn’t think it would be fair for someone to deal with me. Well, that was my first problem…I said “deal” with me.
I’ve overcome these silly questions and comments and so should you, if you have the same questions.
As I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, be attracted more to someone’s soul instead of physical because ya know what? Those can fade. The soul remains beautiful. 💕