Life has a way of changing regularly. Sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse but change is a constant that we have to deal with. For the most part this change is needed so life does not get too boring but sometimes these changes are thrust upon us and it is all we can do to survive the current change. This is where it gets risky.
Five years ago I was forced into a Risky change that has affected my life forever and left me a changed person. I was a very active person and went for runs and walks daily. I loved being outside and exploring the woods behind my apartment complex. I was an avid gardener and planted and grew most of what I ate. Then one day this all changed. I was leaving the building to go to work and the steps at the back door disintegrated under my feet. I went for a nasty fall onto the concrete below and sat there hurt and in shock. Little did I know at the time that this fall was a big change for my life. It seems that leaving home that day was risky.
Five years later and I have had two knee surgeries, and a total knee replacement on my right knee. I am scheduled for a full right hip replacement and the left knee replacement is to follow next year. I can no longer run or even walk for anything more than a city block. I walk with a cane. In fact, I am never allowed to run again in life. I was put on medication to manage my chronic pain which caused fatty liver disease among other side affects. I have an unnatural fear of falling that keeps me from doing many things that I used to never think twice about. Yup, even showering gives me a panic attack. I have to plan way ahead of time if I have to leave the house and no longer have the active life of before. I have gained 40 pounds and deal with depression and anxiety daily. I found a job I could work from home and things were a little better financially but my fear and depression would not go away. I told my supervisor at work about my upcoming surgeries and found myself unemployed. I became severely depressed and put off my surgery.
Recently I decided to take control back of my life as it is now and started dealing with the changes forced upon me nearly 5 years ago. I went off the pain medications and started learning how to deal with chronic pain without prescription drugs. I changed my diet and decided to get rid of the fatty liver by eating a low carb diet. Being less active and the medication had caused more health issues and I wanted control of my life back. Then one more thing happened. It seems the pain medication I was on causes Type 2 Diabetes when you go off of it. Essentially I went off the pain meds and a month later was told I need to take more medication to control the diabetes. This news made me angry and depressed. How one simple event could cause so much change in my life left me reeling with despair.
My dream was to retire in a few years and travel in an RV for a year before settling down and building a tiny house in Belize. I felt like my dreams had been shattered and my plans for the future with them. I decided to take my own Risks and plan for a different future that would ask less of my broken body. I modified my plans and before I lost my job had purchased an old RV that needed work. I am on a very limited income so I will not be able to make all the renovations I originally planned but I refuse to let my life end without trying to follow my dreams. I put every cent I had into the RV and am now working on renovating it slowly. I still have good days and bad days with chronic pain and depression/anxiety but now I have a plan. I know I will not be able to pay rent for much longer and purchasing the RV will give me a place to live. (I almost sold the RV when I lost my job)
I may not have the future I originally planned but I WILL have a future of my making. Besides, does not living a nomadic life in an RV have it’s own rewards and adventures?. I would rather live a life of a nomadic gypsy then have to give up my dogs to live in a low income rented room waiting to die. My dogs are my companions and without them I would surely die fast.
The lesson here is that life is risky. It doesn’t matter if you chose the risk or it is thrust upon you. You have the ability to take your own risks and make your own changes with whatever opportunities you are given. Better yet, make your own opportunities and create the life you want. Take the risk and make the changes needed to reach your dreams. Make some lemonade with the lemons you were given and sit back and enjoy the refreshment.