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Lost and Gained: Jack

By Jack (he/him), 19

What I've lost: independence. The ability to do something for myself. Yes I can still wash. Yes I can still dry but no I can’t cook my own meals and walk a few steps without falling.

Spontaneity. Everything I do has to be planned,prepared and executed with the utmost precision. I can’t just pop to the shop,bob on a bus or go on a holiday tomorrow. I need to plan when I take my meds,how I can freeze my injections when I travel.

What I’ve gained: Empathy. Such a crucial skill in modern times which I Believe some people lack. My condition has forced me to empathise with others on a level not usually needed in everyday life. Doing group physio really makes you feel the pain of others

Friends. Whilst one may think that having a disability is isolating, demorsalizing and upsetting all the time it isn’t. I have gained some of the greatest friends I will ever experience. Ones that understand how I feel with only a glance at my face, ones that do things without questions and ones that work together with me rather than against. My friendships are so much closer with the ones that understand. It means so much.

(Originally published 28/03/20)

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