This was the view from my first flat in London some years ago. I used to sit in front of the window for hours watching the blossoms. Inevitably for me spring brings on the questions of ‘did I achieve what I wanted to in life’. Perhaps it’s all the little flowers coming out and the fresh green everywhere which reminds me of new beginnings. Perhaps it’s because spring marks my second birthday- the day, after months of agony, in which I started a successful treatment for CFIDS (although at that point we weren’t sure if it really was CFIDS). This year it was my 12th “birthday”. And it was a nice one with G and J taking me out for dinner to Del Aziz and T cooking a real Sunday lunch a couple of days later.
This above mentioned state of reflection is regularly followed up with a little pity party which takes some strength talking me out of. What pulled me up today was a blog entry in thewinger. (In case you haven’t heard about it: THE WINGER is a community oriented dance website that shows the lives, insights, and personalities of professionals, students and experts) This entry is by a dancer from the American Ballet Theatre (ABT) suffering from the Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV). What really touched my was the honesty with which he describes his struggle of not letting ABT or EBV determine who he was.
I remember a singing lesson some months ago in which is said “I too was a singer once” to which my teacher indignantly replied “But you still are a singer!” and in my soul I still am a singer. Otherwise I would never still be able to carry of gigs like on the picture last year. Actually, this is a rehearsal picture in case you’re wondering about the absence of people.
Being ‘a singer’ used to define who I was. I worked hard and prepared a lot for rehearsals. Having the feeling to find excuses for myself was not what I was used to. Now I feel betrayed by my body being the excuse. I have tried to be someone else and shut out the singing. In the beginning of my recovery when I was a student for musicology, I concealed the ‘singing factor’. I ended up really miserable, so much of my personality and knowledge was hidden that I felt only like half a person.
Some days I find it hard to adjust and it is a struggle not to let CFIDS or ‘being a singer’ determine who I am. I have been very fortunate to have a supportive family and find real friends who believe in me.
When I was little I used to pray for an exiting life – hmm I can say, that I have been given. I can’t complain about too little excitement in my life!