catharsis_logs: (princess Starscream)
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Tonight while working out I assessed my pain levels, vs, how slowly I was going, compared to how other people were doing and I realized something that I had already realized but hadn't completely...assimilated, and I still haven't, not completely.

I realized (like in that tumblr post) that I have a disability and the fact that I have a disability is something to be considered when comparing myself to people who have able bodies.

I don't know if you know this (you probably do, but I'll say it again anyway) but when I was seventeen I had surgery on my spine. Someone put their hands in my back and moved my spine, and screwed in something like fourteen screws and two metal rods on either side of my spine, with a hooklike attachment at the top that looks really medieval when viewed on an x-ray. This was all done because if I didn't have the surgery, my spine would eventually crush my lungs and heart, and then if that didn't kill me the eventual collapse upon itself of my spine would.

The good: I didn't have to wear a brace anymore, which I didn't wear anyway, and was expected to wear for the rest of my life if I didn't have the surgery because what I had, an S curve scoliosis, wasn't reversable at the state it was currently in. Also good: I wasn't paralyzed after the surgery, waking up was like someone had shoved an *entire* broomstick up my ass, but I could wiggle my toes and that made the pain of waking up that early, worth it.

The bad: chronic pain for the rest of my life, a scar down the length of my back, and nerve issues that if I decide I can't handle I'll need additional surgery that might not even work.

The chronic pain and nerve issues is what I deal with on a daily basis, especially when working out, or standing for long periods of time, or sitting without back support. I've realized that I probably am not capable of a retail job (which I never wanted anyway) or any other job that has me on my feet all day that I am not *intensely* into. Like I *might* be able to tolerate being a massage therapist, because taking other peoples pain away feels good and I'll be building up my back muscles anyway working on other people's pain. Other than that, I'm probably destined for some sort of desk job. I'm hoping I'll either be able to be proficient enough in Japanese that I could do translation work, or I could code.

ANYWAY. I realized in the gym today, that I shouldn't try to live up to the standards of imaginary able-bodied people. That's my hardest trial in working out, especially in a public setting, fighting off those imaginary *able-bodied* people and keeping them from judging me.

An entirely different topic that I've been thinking about as well is: the potential fact that I am nonbinary or agender and thinking about how my presentation of my gender (or lack of, at least in expectation, I love frilly girly things and jewelry, I'm meh about make-up) might influence my safety, at least in the town where I grew up and people who knew me in high school see me in Walmart and then tell my sister "I saw your sister today and she has a *beard*!" I need to tell my sister not to tell me about stuff like that, I'll have to deal with interactions on my own, and if I absolutely don't have to hear about stuff like that I don't want to hear it.

PS. I went to walmart and got a set of double-sided markers and a gigantic coloring book. I plan on coloring sometime soon.
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