I AM NOT SORRY THAT I'M FRAGILE.
I'm not sorry I'm fragile. At war with my body but not in the sense of its aesthetics. I'm at war with my body with its physicality. Despite my normal appearance, you would not understand the internal war. I’ve had asthma since I was born.
Later on in life, the nerve damage and joint pains came into play, which hinders me at times. The nerve damage felt like random electric shocks or sandpaper under my skin flowing down my arms, legs, and face. I believe it was in 2002, I was about 16 or 17, going to the several doctors, seeking a reason to the muscular pains and random shocks I felt in my body; only to be told it was all in my head because the MRI and CT scan showed nothing. No one would take different approach and assumed the prior doctor was right with His decision. “It’s stress related, women suffer higher levels of stress. You need to destress.”
So I dealt with the uncomfortability of my body with the best knowledge I had. The drive in me would not let me sit back, I pushed through life.
Fast forward to winter time 2014: I had return back to college. I had a large scale drawing I had to do. I worked on it until I woke one morning paralyzed, to be tortured with pain every time I tried to move. I was mentally screaming to my body but it could only reply back so weakly my daughter would look at me so confused and unaware. I was scared because this pain that was supposedly in my head was affecting my passions and my rights as a mother, so back to the doctors.
This time the same tests were still negative but a new test was given. Finally some sort a reason for it all: the disc in my neck clamped on my nerves, affected my limbs, one section of my hand was completely nerve dead from carpal tunnel which was why my grasp was weak.
Lately the muscular pains have grown immensely and the nerve firings have gone rampant. I have been dealt a hand of cards in life that centers around pain; physical and emotional. I am always questioned why do I suffer so much? Or told I’m too young to have all these problems, I’m only 30. Or, why not stay home and live off the government? The best remark made by others is, “Gosh, you are just full of problems. I would hate to have your life.”
These questions and comments made me feel inadequate, for society and my daughter. However the more I was asked these questions, the more I wanted to prove everyone wrong. I pushed myself physically and mentally because just being alive is not living. My physical limits cannot limit my pursuit of life. The pain gives me a sense of appreciation of life that most can't grasp and a motivation to push pass limits that others think I have. I'm not sorry for my fragility because it's my strength to live through my passions, it’s a beautiful thing, and can't stop me being the single mother I am. I'm happy I'm not perfect and I am fragile. I'm not sorry for my pain.
About the photo:
I choose my studio as a place in which I feel feel the strongest and the most centered with myself because it is my sanctuary and a place where I confront issues head on. A place where my body can be it's body not judged but it's limitations but by what it accomplishes. No one can ever tell me otherwise.