Accepting Myself As ‘Uniquely Abled’ After Developing a Chronic Illness



By  in The Mighty.


The moment I realized I was uniquely abled and not just someone with extra limitations, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I still don’t understand exactly why this was the case. I don’t define myself by these limitations. I realize there is so much more to me. But the moment it hit me that I was uniquely abled… I nearly crumbled into a million pieces.

During the course of 44 years I learned a lot about my skills, capabilities and limitations. I firmly knew who I was and exactly what I could bring to any task. But then along came myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), a multi-system disease that causes dysfunction of the neurological, immune, endocrine and energy metabolism systems. Now that my ME has fully set in, I have had to start the process of learning from scratch exactly who I am, what my current capabilities are and what my new limitations are. Perhaps most importantly, how will I react to facing the biggest challenge of my life?

New me, new life. Is it a gift I should cherish in some way? A unique opportunity to create a brand new me? Or is it a challenge that is just going to slow me down, limit my dreams and reduce my quality of life?


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