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Being Sick Doesn't Mean I Have to 'Settle'

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Two weeks ago on a Tuesday night I had a meltdown. This was a different kind of meltdown. I wasn’t feeling bad for myself or wishing for my old life back or crying tears of pain. I was crying tears of joy. I was crying because a boy told me he loved me.

• What is Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome?
• What Are Common Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Symptoms?

I know at this point I begin to sound ridiculous. I would’ve found this ridiculous myself a year ago. Fellow spoonies understand why I was crying, though. When I got sick nine months ago, my life turned upside down. I lost friends, I lost hobbies, I lost myself. Along the way I found happiness and gained myself back piece by piece, but along the way I learned to settle. I learned how to budget out spoons in order to keep myself sane. I learned which plans to commit to, and I learned what battles were worth fighting.

The problem with settling is that you get in a habit of it. You start to believe that you will never be loved again, you will never be as happy as you were before, you will never have a normal life. Well, two weeks ago I was crying because I learned that this wasn’t true. I learned that despite my struggles, someone could love silly old me with the Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. I learned that sometimes in life you don’t have to settle despite your diagnosis. I learned that I could be in a happy, healthy relationship.

To any of you spoonies getting into this habit of settling, please keep this in mind: It is OK to settle on the small things, but do not give up on yourself. You can overcome your diagnosis and find happiness in places you never thought to look. I believe you can find that person that makes your world light up every time you see them. Just keep holding on until that day. To Grayson, the boy who made this article happen, thank you for teaching me this lesson that I will never forget. You may have found me strange to be sobbing on that Tuesday evening, but you turned my world upside down in more ways than one, and I will forever be grateful.

Originally published: November 2, 2016
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