Last night was a big night for me.
Ever since being hit by the catastrophic illness that resulted in my disability I have been very careful with my health and my hours. The doctor had told me that I could expect my energy to return in 6 or 7 months, but it did not. I went to bed, now, earlier than my parents sent me as a child. So I have always ended my work days while I felt strong and took care never to really exhaust myself. No more hospital beds for me.
Then when I got the schedule for my work here at Hope House there were several evening events - primarily so that I could get the message to part time staff (last night) and people with disabilities, tonight and tomorrow night. I decided that I wanted to try. See if I could still do it. I recognized that I was feeling stronger. That over the last few months I wasn't as burdened by life as I had been.
So, I gave it a shot.
Hope House has managed to get themselves staff that have energy and passion. Don't know what questions they ask in interviews but they are obviously the right ones.
As I sat waiting to start pressing down my usual nerves and quieting my 'will I make it' concerns. I listened to them chat, laugh and eat the pizza that had been brought in.
The lecture was on something I really care about 'supporting people with disabilities who are being teased or bullied' and once I got started I got into it. Only once, about midway, did I feel my energy flag and there was momentary panic that I wouldn't make it. But they, the audience, were so into the lecture that they almost injected me with the energy I needed. If they could be there, be alert and be passionate about my words - then so should I.
It was over.
I did it.
I had given up to disability something that it had not claimed.
There is new territory under my command.
It feels good.
I said all this to Joe on the way back to hotel.
"So, I can book you to do evening work again?"
I thought, "No, but because I don't want to, not because I can't."
There is a really big difference.