I’ve written this a hundred times and I can’t seem to get it right.
So I’ll just say the one thing that feels right:
I didn’t think I’d make it here.
26 wasn’t a sure thing in my mind last year, because the dysautonomia and depression were too much last Fall. I couldn’t deal anymore. I still took all of my meds, went to all of my treatments, stayed hydrated, took in my sodium… I did everything the doctors said, but I was just doing it for basic survival, not for longevity.
And that’s what made 25 into the most interesting year of my life.
Because last Fall, I would pull the covers over my head and hold my breath and pray that if I just stayed still enough, I could dissolve into thin air—
But last Spring, I applied for a job, and two days later I had an interview, and the next week I was employed, and I was ecstatic about it.
Last Winter, it was still hard for me to get out. But I did, because it was important to me to try, and I felt better when I did. So I made plans with friends, I stayed out late, I ran lots of errands for the family, and I enjoyed feeling productive for the first time in months—
And last Summer, I took two trips, one to Nashville and one to the beach, and loved the feeling of being away from the safety net of my bedroom, a place I rarely left last year.
When I was a teenager, I decided that you become an adult when you get your own health insurance or you turn 26, whichever comes first.
By teenage Shannon’s standards, I’m officially adult Shannon now.
Hey look, Ma, I made it.