Not a girl, Not yet a woman

Not a girl, Not yet a woman

Hey there!

Remember me?

It’s been so long since I’ve posted on here and I know some newbies are following. 

THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR SUPPORT,

YOU GET ME THROUGH EACH DAY! 

So, I will reintroduce myself. Because truthfully, I am meeting the new me too. 😉

I’m Bridget. 

My illness is chronic, but I’m iconic.

Ok, that was silly, but please no judgment. I need these small moments of levity for my sanity.

My illness is chronic, but I’m iconic.

I started this page 4 years ago (!!!!), which is insane because it both seems like yesterday and a lifetime ago. I remember the girl who started this page (Ok, 36 is not exactly a girl. But as Britney would say, “I’m not a girl, not yet a woman”). With the amount of growth I’ve done over these past years, I can say I do actually feel like a woman now. Pushing 40 can really do that to you.

I started this page when I was broken. I had lost my career, my independence, and my first long-term grown-up relationship. 

I had no plans, nowhere to go, nothing to do. I was floating away and had nothing to grasp onto.

What I didn’t know at the time was that I really had everything. I had my whole family. I had my brother. We (as a society) had freedom. There was no COVID – which actually blows my mind that there was a BEFORE time. 

Since that time I’ve moved multiple times, got into and out of another relationship, stabilized my health, re-gained my independence, and gained two wonderful kitties. The most important thing I have gained is a (maybe, kinda, sorta) purpose.

For 20 years I fought my kidney disease (FSGS). I tried to make it fit into MY life, rather than fitting my life into IT.

Switching that has been life-changing. In the greatest way. 

I now know I can live a full, mostly happy, and reasonably healthy life WITH chronic kidney disease. I’ve released the pressure I placed on myself to keep up,

To do it all,

To date,

To work,

To workout,

To socialize. 

I now have peace with going slow, resting whenever my body asks for it. I no longer push through. I stop, I listen, and I act accordingly.

As much as COVID was a life ruiner for so many, it was kind of a life-saver for me.  

As the world learned that going slow and pushing through wasn’t everything, I learned it too. 

I mean, I guess I always knew, I just didn’t allow it in my life. When I did I felt like a failure, a drain on society, my family, my friends, and even myself. 

It’s the mindset switch we all experienced. As everyone learned this, I allowed myself to breathe and really let it sink in.  

We connected and we became acutely aware of how fragile life is. How quickly it can change. How important it is to embrace who we are, where we are, and what we are.  

We realized holy crap, I can just live. I don’t have to be producing something all the time. I don’t have to go go go.

I can be still.

I can connect with myself.

Being present is enough.

I always thought I need to be productive to be worthy. Worthy of respect, of love, of a place on this earth.

Now I know that BEING BRIDGET is enough.  It’s more than enough.  I have so many people in my life who love and care for me just as I am.  I don’t need to do anything besides be myself and I will have them on my side, loving me and keeping me inspired to get out of bed every day.

I’ve started using this newfound freedom to actually be productive.  Which is a fun twist. 

I now use my real self to speak out on behalf of patients, the chronically ill ones, the ones on dialysis, and the ones with a transplant. I have started using my experience as my expertise. 

I’ve gotten to work with organizations that allowed me to tell my story. 

The story I NEVER wanted. 

The story I NEVER would have written for myself. 

The story that led me to the woman I am today.

This new purpose is the easiest thing I’ve ever done.  I just talk about myself. 🤩

I have started using my experience as my expertise. 

That’s easy. Tell the chronicles of Bridget. The adventure from the naive 17-year-old newly diagnosed Bridget to the wisened on the cusp of FORTY 😳 Bridget.

I love her. She is strong. She is resilient. She strives to be a loyal friend. A loving family member. A beacon of light for those with chronic illness – or really anyone struggling.

It’s not easy.  

I’m not happy every day.

I still severely struggle with depression. 

But it turns just by sharing that depression, that story, and connecting with others, I’ve received a ton of support. 

I know I am not alone. 

You are not alone. 

In the end, that’s what matters.  Being connected to others, through love, support, and kindness.

I will continue to share, write, to be open and honest about who I am and what I need.

One response to “Not a girl, Not yet a woman”

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