For over two years I have been striving towards a single ideal. Stability. When I was first diagnosed I was told that my greatest challenge would lie in the battle to get my condition under control. Once my body settled into a state that could be considered stable, everything would get a little simpler. A little more predictable. And longterm planning would no longer be a laughable activity.
I have been chasing after this ideal for so long that my imagination has blurred the line between dreams and reality. For the past year or so, whenever I have thought of the word ‘stable’ my mind has conjured images of a mythical land filled with laughter – soft music playing, a pastel color scheme, and gently floating transportation devices. A life of ease and happiness.
I suppose it’s only natural to fantasize when something seems unattainable. After all, I have been living with what can be categorized as an unstable condition for over two years now. Approximately 800 days of life made predictable only by the constant struggle to complete basic, every day tasks.
But suddenly, or perhaps in a manner so gradual I have only now begun to notice, my life is changing. I have had two good weeks in a row. Not perfect. Not healthy. But I have managed to stay in control for their entirety.
I have found myself wondering when precisely one can be deemed ‘stable’. Is there a certain amount of time that must pass without incident? A certain level of stamina to be achieved? Does it all come down to predictability? Or is it strictly a medical term determined by fluctuations in heart rate, blood pressure, and brain activity?
On Thursday I rested on my couch after walking over 1.5 km. I listened to my dishwasher chug away as my eyes travelled over my freshly vacuumed floor and piles of neatly folded laundry. I found myself wondering – is this what stability feels like? Is this what it feels like to be normal? To be in control?
And for a moment I just sat there, filled with contentment. Simultaneously thankful and very proud.
But then the moment passed. My smile faded and I couldn’t figure out why. After all, I had been working towards this moment for the past two years. But then I realized – I was bored. Not because I had energy to spare. I didn’t. I was exhausted. But I had achieved my goal, and was left feeling empty. Feeling restless.
And since then I have plotted and I have dreamed. I have come up with ideas, plans, and so many goals. I have made lists. I have been searching for a new purpose with excitement and a strange hint of desperation.
Perhaps my only marker of stability is a need for change.