For some reason in this society we seem to put people on a pedestal who can do things other people can’t do. If you can do the things our society deems desirable then you’re going to have a much easier time than those who cannot. Imagine if we lived in a world where we could just focus on the things we can do, and that we enjoy. I know my life would be a lot different.
When I couldn’t go to school as a teenager, and then when I spent my life up until 25 not being able to work, I felt like a complete failure. One of the first things people ask you when you meet them is ‘what do you do?’, and at the times when I had to hide the fact that I was unwell and lived on benefits I felt worthless. As if my life had no value, and at the time I believed that to be true. Now I realise that I didn’t think that about myself because it was true, I thought that about myself because as a society that is what we are teaching people to think about themselves and others. If we are not contributing to society in a way that others deem useful or valuable, then our lives are seen as having less or no meaning.
In my own life, this idea still means I try and force myself to do things that maybe I just can’t do. And those things might seem easy or simple things to others but those are the things I struggle with. People say that the more you do something the easier it becomes, so even though it is not getting any easier I will keep forcing myself to do it no matter the consequences to my health. I am definitely going to try and stop doing this! Just because it seems like everyone else can do something, doesn’t mean I have to. There are others things that I can do and I am better focusing my attention on those things.
Imagine if we lived in a world where we could all do that. Imagine if we didn’t have to constantly feel like failures because we keep hearing that ‘we can do anything if we just believe that we can’, but believing isn’t working for us. Imagine if we didn’t have to feel like something was wrong with us for not being able to do something that others can do easily. Imagine if we could just do what we can do, and stop feeling guilty for the things we can’t. Imagine if everyone’s life was thought of as equally valuable to our society, no matter what it was that we were contributing. I know that I wish we lived in a world like that.