when a global pandemic makes you stronger.

After a conversation with a mentor of mine recently, she commented on how, while a number of people have grown more discouraged during this strange time, it seems like I’ve gotten stronger. She is right, and there are a few different reasons this is the case.

First of all, as lame as it is, there are *many* aspects of pandemic living that have genuinely made the world feel a little more friendly towards this young adult living with a couple chronic illnesses. With a simple log-in to a computer screen, I can now chat with my neurologist, hop in a support group, listen to a lecture, “go” to a conference I’m interested in, and see my entire family without having to conserve extra energy and/or take extra medication to ensure my brain is capable enough to make the drive. Staying in with roommates on a Saturday night in our pajamas is cool now. And perhaps most revolutionary, in addition to the major privilege of the family & community I’m surrounded by, less work + government support I never asked for has allowed me to prioritize my health & regain physical strength in ways that have proved to be 100% necessary for my own ability to thrive.

At the same time, I have to simply give the experiences I’ve gained through facing intense suffering over the past ten years some of the credit for my ability to not get eaten up by this global pandemic thing. Because it seems that, every time we walk through an experience that completely turns our life upside down, that is so fair & unexpected & sometimes just plain stupid, we come out of it a little more ready & a little more prepared for the next time this will happen. When you choose to believe, over and over again, that there is always enough grace to face our pain and even to bring about some sort of deeper healing because of it, I guess you almost subconsciously become more and more convinced in the truth of that statement.

This doesn’t make hard things less hard (ie: I’m OVER not being able to freely gather with the people I love and the holidays made me sad & I grieve the losses & isolation this time has caused for many)…it simply makes them an opportunity to grow stronger.

Here’s a sweaty-post-workout-still catching my breath-kinda pic….aka a feeling I will now never take for granted. #choosinggrit #pots #chronicmigraine #sufferstrong #hopeheals

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