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Moving Boundaries and Limitations

By Out-of-Sync Woman
Lack of imagination and fear impact me in regards to what I think other people think I’m capable of achieving. It’s easier for other people to think I’m capable of less or that I can’t do something. They would have to think about why something’s difficult or that I may be able to do it with a little bit of help. Could it be that my pursuit to do something difficult or different casts light on their limitations what difficulties that they have? Could it also be that it highlights their prejudices or unthinking assumptions and that makes them uncomfortable?
I’m a smart capable person; I’m not impulsive but when I wanted to start working again all I heard from my family was fear and anxiety. I had to seek out support outside of my family to find out that no, it would not impact my benefits. Pursuing paid employment was actually better for me. Don’t get me wrong, I had to be picky and smart about what type of work I chose to pursue and I did need some help getting hired and understanding the contract.  Needing support from the government and getting money from the government is entirely anxiety-provoking for me because it means I’m dependent. if some bureaucrat or the government changes its requirements on who’s eligible to receive benefits, I would be in trouble. Relying and depending on assistance means that I might not have lots of options and that causes me anxiety. On the other hand, seeking employment is difficult and takes a fair bit of expertise. I can understand why my family was incredibly scared, frustrated, and less likely to want to rock the boat. After all, I could lose my benefits, and then they need to help me reapply. There are no easy answers but relying totally on feelings means that you could miss options and opportunities.
I believe their fear and uncertainty really holds me back; it scares me and limits me in a lot of ways. This makes it so much less likely that I will confide in or even seek their advice. I’m lucky that I have outside support who can help me find the resources and think through the situations that I face on a daily basis. I don’t like keeping things from my family, I’d rather share what’s going on in my life. I’m thinking that maybe everybody has family members who say “you can’t do this” or “it would be difficult to do that.” It’s not just me but others like me who have disabilities.
This is usually the part where I come up with solutions or things that I think would work. In this case, though I really don’t have any solutions. I have to take comfort in the fact that I’m an adult and can make my own decisions. I also have to acknowledge that I have to take responsibility for my own life. I have to be willing to take chances and accept that not everybody’s going to be happy with the choices I make. In a lot of ways, I have to be more creative and think outside the box and see things in shades of grey. This means what works for other people may not work for me.
Lately, I’ve been making a lot of life changes and thinking about what I want. I don’t know if I’ll be able to achieve what I want but pursuing it and making the changes so it’s possible is important to me. Because my family has fears and anxieties, I haven’t confided in them or shared what I’m thinking about. It’s really hard because this is important to me but I don’t want to be shut down and told this is not possible or you can’t do that. I know that my family will be sad or disappointed that I didn’t share it with them. However, as an adult, I have the ability and responsibility to decide who I share with and what I share. I’m willing to take the repercussions or consequences of not deciding to share.
I’m so grateful that I am an adult and that I have the ability to make my own choices. Being a grown-up is hard and I have to accept that “the buck stops here” as the saying goes. No matter what age you are, no matter how supportive your family is, fear and lack of imagination will impact you. I guess like everyone, they all just have to try their best. As always, I hope this gives my readers a starting point for a good conversation or just something to think about. Best wishes to everyone for a safe and happy year.