I miss being able to change a light bulb. One of the many complications or unfortunate circumstances that has resulted from the loss of my legs is my physical inability to carry out simple tasks.
Even more frustrating than not being able to perform simple tasks, is to have taken the time to learn how to perform more complicated, involved or skilled tasks and be unable to implement what you worked so hard to learn.
When you are unable to execute learned tasks that you were quite competent at performing before your disability, frustration often results. This inpediment is not only the inabilty to perform the task itself but also the distress of having to explain to someone else how to do something for you that previously you could have done for yourself.
I have always been a "do it myself" type of person, not relying on others; either persons being paid or persons doing me a favor. I have always derived satisfaction from learning how to do something and then doing it.
It has been tough for me to have to rely on others for help in doing things that before my leg loss, I would not have thought twice about doing myself.
I have learned that through this whole process of telling others how I would like something done, that basically I am a poor teacher. A teacher who is easily frazzled by someone else's inability to understand what I am saying.
In a nutshell I am impatient. I think this impatience stems from the frustration of not being able to do things myself coupled with the feeling that if I were able to do it myself, it would be done more to my satisfaction.
Learning how to not sweat the small stuff has been an ongoing and difficult hurdle for me. People like things done the way they like things done.
Sometimes when I can't seem to make the other person understand what I want them to do, I just want to do it myself, but often times I am physically incapable.
Where does all of this lead? Frequently it leads to stress and unhapiness. Over the past three or four years I have had to learn to be happy with what is and not with what could or should have been.
Even though I feel the pangs of frustration from time to time I have begun to relax a little and realize that in the scheme of things, the less agitated I feel the happier I will be.
On those days when I can't get something done the exact way I would have done it myself, I have found that humor helps, laughing at the situation. Perhaps even postponing whatever I feel it is that needs to be done to another day or it may not even need to be accomplished at all.
This may sound like I am settling for less than I want or feel I deserve but then again is the agitation worth it?
Focussing on what I can still do for myself and being thankful for my ability to articulate to others what I want them to do, makes me a more mellow person, less frustrated and hence, happier.
Maybe we all now and again allow ourselves to get caught up in the trivialities of our lives and jeopardize our own happiness in the process.
No I can't change a light bulb myself but I am fortunate to have an assistant to do it for me. Remembering the good in your life and not allowing what you can no longer do outweigh what you are still able to accomplish, will make you a happier person.
After all isn't happiness what we all want out of our lives?
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