(Today’s blog post is part of the Blogging From A to Z Challenge during which writers all over the world blog each day in April based on a corresponding letter of the alphabet. These are my personal stories about living with Trigeminal Neuralgia, the most painful diagnosis known to man.)
I’m an analogy person. I’m also a car person. I love to drive – preferably very fast. One morning, I woke up with this phrase on my mind:
All corners and no curves.
I sat on the edge of my bed and thought about it. Then it dawned on me that this is how my life has been, especially the past ten years or so.
When you’re driving, the best kind of road is one that has straightaways combined with some curves here and there. It makes the drive more exciting, but still allows you to keep your speed up as you head to your destination. Sure, you might cover the brake just in case the curve is tighter than you thought, but you’re still able to move forward with momentum.
My life these days seems to be lacking in gentle curves but is awash with corners. And corners are a completely different thing than curves. They require you to slow down to a stop, take the turn, then speed back up again. They are too abrupt and often you end up going in a totally different direction. An argument with a friend? Curve. Minor car accident? Curve. Making a new friend? Curve. Fired from a job? Corner. End of a relationship? Corner – or maybe a curve depending on the relationship, I suppose. Then there are the moments in life when you hit a dead-end. You can do a three-point turn and follow the pavement back again, but your trip is irrevocably changed because you realize that you can’t really return the same way yet you don’t quite know how to find the right road to move forward. The loss of a loved is is like that. And so is TN.
When my sister died, I looked at life in a different way. Things that seemed important no longer really mattered. I tried to focus on blessings I hadn’t even considered. I looked at myself and realized I wasn’t living a life that was authentic to who I really am. But mostly, there was one less traveler on the road ahead to help guide my way. And honestly? To some extent, I’m still a little lost.
With TN, I came upon the dead end and haven’t quite turned myself around yet. Oh, I keep the car running and am trying to map out a new route, but so far my GPS has failed me.
Will I ever go back the way I came? Probably not. But my hope is that I find me a new road, one where I can manage the potholes while still appreciating the scenery. One with more curves than corners, at least for a while. I’ve maneuvered enough of those already.