I can’t even remember anymore what I was reading when I came across it. I only remember the feeling of exquisite clarity that washed over me.
I thought, with such a wise kind of thrill, this is my life.
It has become one of the greatest truths I live by, which has actually made accepting my life with a disability leaps and bounds easier.
Life is difficult.
This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it.
Once we know that life is difficult –
once we truly understand and accept it –
then life is no longer difficult.
Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult
no longer matters.
– M. Scott Peck
For me, this is the most helpful quote for living and coping with life with a disability. It’s a reminder to stop fighting the fact that life with a disability is hard.
Let’s all say it together, LIFE IS SO VERY HARD WITH ANY DISABILITY.
Although my parents always taught me from the get go that life isn’t fair, I carried around this subconscious belief of “Well c’mon, I have (long before I said live with) this disability, things should be at least a little easier.”
Ahhh, but it doesn’t work that way…
This quote actually gave me freedom. Freedom to stop fighting about the fact that life is harder with affected muscle coordination, balance, and a speech. Freedom from anger about EVERYTHING taking longer to do. Freedom from the frustration of always dealing with the fact that people will always superficially judge me based on my disability.
This quote frees my mental energy to focus on LIVING with a “harder” life.
Here’s a quick, albeit trivial, example, but one I used every day. I’m a big coffee drinker and I like my certain coffee mugs (I think that’s a woman thing?). I usually begin working in my office each day before 7:00am, with a mug of coffee beside me.
Due the effect CP has on my balance and muscle spasms in my hand, it’s a bit of a challenge for me to carry a mug of coffee, especially in our home where my office is upstairs. It takes me a good few minutes to carry the coffee because I have to walk very slowly to try not to spill.
I still dribble coffee all the time. In our last home, I put down dark brown carpeting in the office to hide my dribbles. Sometimes I get my husband to escort the mug up to the office, but I’m an early riser and he’s often not awake before I get to my second cup.
I could focus on how hard it is to carry that darn cup. I could be more practical and put it in a cup with a lid (but then I wouldn’t have my favorite mug). I could be frustrated about the precious few minutes of alone time I “waste” by carrying up the mug. I suppose I could give up coffee…yeah, right!
What I do is take a deep breath and begin the process every day of accepting all the little ways CP slows me down and gives me time for mental clarity. And you know what? Carrying that coffee becomes easier.
How has accepting what’s hard for you made life ironically easier for you?
I’ll be live on Facebook tonight at 8pm (EST) to talk about this and have it be an interactive discussion. Tune in, share your thoughts, or message me on Facebook ahead of time.