I was born with scoliosis, the curvature of the spine, and had surgery at age 10. My back used to make metal detectors go off at the airport. I have a wallet-sized X-Ray displaying two metal rods in my back, correcting my curve. I can’t complete a full sit-up. I have minor heart palpitations. I get frustrated when I can’t bend over properly to tie my shoes.
I, I, I…I have so much more to think about. I have so much to live for. You have so much to live for. We all have so much more to live for.
It’s easy to get wrapped up in our own little worlds and think that our physical or internal struggles are the most important thoughts, similar to my rant above. It’s easy to get discouraged. It’s easy to feel frustrated when we live with conditions beyond our control.
It can be difficult to push through the pain. But it is worth it.
Whenever I feel discouraged about my scoliosis, I think back to one of Oprah’s guests from one of her many memorable interviews. This young woman, Jacqui Saburido, was severely burned in a terrible car accident, due to a drunk driver. Her skin and hair melted away. She was left unrecognizable. The woman was unconscious for 10 months. To this day, I can’t read or watch her story without crying for her.
When Jacqui spoke on Oprah, I remember her mentioning that she allows herself to cry for five minutes a day, and then she moves on with her day. She does not allow herself to feel sorry all day. She perseveres.
Jacqui tries her very best to be strong. It makes me re-evaluate my own concerns regarding my back. Just because my back aches a little or I feel discomfort doesn’t mean I should spend all day wrapped up in these thoughts.
Sometimes we need a moving story to remind us that we are lucky to be alive, to keep us grounded and thankful. Our physical and emotional pains may not be easy, but we have so much more to look forward to.
We must not let these pains set us back. We must let ourselves cry for a few minutes if we need to, but only for those few minutes. We must move on and make happy memories to fill up our hearts and our minds. Most importantly: we must persevere.