Dystonia is a frustrating condition that many people do not understand. Every day is an unpredictable day for those of us who suffer from it, not knowing whether we will walk, talk, or able to plan the days ahead of us.
For the past few years after my diagnosis, stress was high. The thought of being a burden to my spouse haunted me. The loss of my ability to plan activities with family, schedule meetings at work, or simply jump in the car and go somewhere left me feeling defeated. I lost my independence, and my condition forced me to take a long break.
I quickly realized that I have to find ways to occupy my time and not focus on my condition, after all, dystonia doesn’t define me. Whenever I could not move around, I sat on my recliner and let my mind wander. I am not a writer, but I love to create stories; I have a broad imagination! When I was younger, I would write poetry even though I did not know-how. Some were so bad only, I would understand. I also enjoyed writing song lyrics. I wrote about happiness, sadness, and pain; whatever came to mind.
Writing whether they turned out to be good or not, gave me a sense of peace. Whenever I felt discouraged, writing would always lift my spirits. I remembered the feelings writing brought me when I was younger, and I started writing again. Whenever an episode would come on, instead of fighting and getting frustrated, I picked up my laptop, and I wrote. I wrote about anything, whether it made sense or not, I wrote!
Writing, unlike my condition, gave me a sense of control. I can be whoever I want to be; I can be a famous author or the queen of England. I can be wherever I want to be without leaving home, perhaps sipping piña colada at a beach in Jamaica. In my writings, I can feel any emotion; I can be sad; I can be happy. I can be excited; I can also be angry. Writing made me feel invincible. Because writing allowed me to express my emotions, it gave me a great sense of satisfaction; relieving stress.
Writing stories was a hobby that turned out to be therapeutic for me.
Even though my condition forced me to quit my job and stay home, it also opened new opportunities. As a result of the unexpected halt dystonia brought to my life, I learned to publish a book. “Believe,” a faith-based, Christmas book was published in 2017. “Good Morning, Mirror!” a children’s book about the importance of positive self – talk followed in 2018.
Writing brought out the creativity in me; it has given me an outlet to release my emotion and brought calmness into my daily battle with my condition. Writing helped me managed stress and gave me a new perspective on life.