Tiara’s Tuesday Talk – by Sara Sheibley
Everyone compares. It’s the whole keeping up with the Joneses thing. “Hey look! The Joneses got a flower bed. I need a flower bed.” “The Joneses bought a new car. I need a new car.”
Wow… Jenna (Yes I am picking this wonderful woman) had 16,521 steps yesterday. I only did 4587. I should do better. I’m letting everyone down. I… I… I…
Notice what happens once the comparison materializes. We take something good about someone else and warp it into a downward spiral of self-deprecation, deeming ourselves unworthy or incapable, not good enough. Not only that, it also becomes all about me, I, Myself but not in a good way. It weighs us down… Takes the fight out of us.
When I compare myself to someone else, guilt overwhelms. Rather than celebrate that person’s success or praise their particular talents, I feel guilty about my lack there of. Guilty for not being “enough”. Guilty for lacking progress. Guilty for experiencing failure. Essentially, I feel guilty for being me. Then, yes, I throw in feeling guilty for feeling guilty. That’s a double whammy for you.
Guilt is an ugly word but then again… It’s an ugly thing. Guilt narrowly glares inward. I am not good enough. I fail too often. I’m a disappointment. But we aren’t. I say we because I struggle with this myself. Not just in my steps but in my writing, in my relationships with others. Guilt is unforgiving and self-centered. We become more consumed with comparing ourselves we forget to be happy for the other party.
Here we are, stepping to the moon. If you take 10 steps to go to the bathroom, it counts. If you take the dog for a walk, it counts. Every single step matters therefore, every single PERSON matters. You matter. I matter. We may not be doing the million step challenge and I may not leave my chair for a day but I matter.
Not only do we, the walkers, matter, but so does everyone cheering us on. How can you help besides that? Repost. Reblog, Twitter it, reddit, Like it, share it with all your social media outlets…talk about it. Get the message out there. Call, email, write a letter to your congressman or congresswoman. Tell them we need funding to research a cure. Help with fundraising. Send friends and family this link, http://walkyourasoff.com/fundraising/ or contact us here http://walkyourasoff.com/more-info/ , and just ask how you can help out. This is just as crucial as the steps, if not more. The more people know, the more people can help. We need to put
On the map!
The goal of this walk is to put a message out to the world. We have teams and walkers from all over the place. The more we push the bigger this becomes, but it takes all of us. We are collaborating to make something awesome into something even more AWESOME. Jenna listed her “I Believe” statements and I think now is a good time to remind ourselves of them.
I believe we have a huge opportunity with our walk because we are doing something extremely unique. We are raising awareness WHILE we are doing something good for ourselves – not for a day or two – but for two months! Our walk educates, changes thinking, and challenges the status-quo.
I believe that we can be healthy at the same time we live with a chronic disease. The two do not need to be mutually exclusive.
I believe we can live good and productive lives despite the challenges we face physically from a life with autoimmune arthritis.
I believe that the more people who know about A.S. the better chance we have of seeing a cure for it in our lifetime.
I believe people should not have to live a life of pain & disease. We need a cure!
I believe in the power of the patient!
I believe that when people take control and actively advocate as a community, the change is exponential and powerful.
I believe in the strength of a community of amazing advocates and voices for change.
I believe we can change the way the world views people with a chronic illness.
I believe people with Ankylosing Spondylitis or any of the family of related diseases can greatly improve how they feel by walking & exercising.
Last but not least…
I believe in you – everyday I believe you are making this happen. Our success will be because of you.
Because of YOU. Every last one of you. And me. And you and you and you…
Sara Sheibley is a wife and mother of four. Through out most of her life she has dealt with chronic illness. Born with small fiber axonal polyneuropathy, she had aches and pains early on but wasn’t diagnosed with AS until 2008. Since then she has had to champion her own cause after she developed hemalytic anemia from treatments. Although she suffers with more than just AS, she feels that this is her primary illness and wants to be active in helping the cause. Sara & her Tiara’s Tuesday Talk will discuss a myriad of topics from assistive devices to walking help when you have other illnesses to consider.