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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Am I a Fraud?

I ran a 12k race at 12:12am on 12/12, and although I am seriously proud of that accomplishment I have a little niggle of guilt in my periphery.  You see, 2 years ago I finally had to give in and do the one thing I have dreaded since my journey with MS began more than  20 years ago.  I applied  for now receive social security disability benefits. I simply couldn't work and function like a healthy person any longer.  I tried, boy did I try.  I couldn't keep up with my family anymore, I had to always make the choice between work or spending the weekend at a swim meet or dance competition, but couldn't do both because it was too exhausting.  I couldn't think straight, bills were not getting paid at home or at work. Too many things to really even list, but the bottom line was something had to give and it was work.
I felt incredibly guilty, like I had somehow given up.  I hated that financially the burden was now on my husband.  I felt like people would look at me as a fraud if I did "normal" things like going the grocery store or working in my garden.  I didn't know how to be disabled.  After some therapy sessions I have come to accept that I haven't given up I just started a new phase in my life, and I earned my Social Security its not a handout.

I stated running about a year or so ago because my Air Force husband is big on fitness and runs the fit tests at our local base and he encouraged me to give running a try.  I. Loved. It.  Granted my gait is off and I have to nap after every run, but the it makes me feel graceful and free.

That little guilt though....I wonder if I should act more disabled, and if people see me as a fraud. Good thing I have a therapy session tomorrow.

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