Thursday, January 5, 2017

My Job is Surviving

There is an unbelievable amount of work that goes into being a college student. Between classes, homework, and studying it's a wonder I get much else done. However, life does not stop based on our school schedules.

Many students who are in college also have to work to help support themselves. That is simply not an option for me right now. It would be too much for me to handle if I tried to work even a part time job while simultaneously doing school. I am so very fortunate to have wonderful parents and my grandpa who help me out with living expenses and books. I also have a tuition fee waiver grated by Cal Vet for my Dad being a disabled veteran of the Army.

I do volunteer each week, but there have been quite a few times when I feel guilty for receiving so much help and not working, but I have to take a step back and look at the things I do have responsibility for. Taking care of my mental health is like a part time job for me.

Scheduled around my classes I spend five hours each week with therapists or in groups, plus the weeks I travel 30 minutes one way to see my psychiatrist. I have multiple times per day where I stop what I'm doing and take a coping skills break. Jenny is part of my mental health care and I spend time each day with her working on her training, playing, and making sure she gets the proper amount of exercise. I also have to go to bed by 10 each possible night so as to avoid exacerbating symptoms needlessly.

For any of you who struggle with a disability of any kind and feel guilty because you can't do as much as some other people: don't. Do as much as you can and remember how hard you fight for your health and the things you work for that people can't always see. It isn't always as simple as that and I know how easy it is to feel guilty. For me though, I am working on accepting the things I can do.

In my religion we don't say recited prayers, however, when I was in Residential the Serenity Prayer was used in a few different settings. I grew to love it.

God, grant me the Serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can
and the wisdom to know the difference. 

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