Deciding to get tested Part 2
I'm in a much better place now. I've seen a psychologist and she's helped me figure out what I want to do. I'm learning how to listen to my inner voice and self. I'm learning to find strength and see myself as someone who can be okay with EITHER result. Someone who is resilient with or without Alzheimer's disease. It's a work in progress, but I can honestly say that as soon as I made a decision, I felt like a weight had been lifted.
I've decided I'm going to get tested. Thus far, I've felt like I could live my life the way I wanted. But it seems like now I need to confront Alzheimer's and confront my fear.
This process has made me realize how much I was living in fear. I know that there was always that tiny amount of hope and of course I don't know how much that is accounting for my psychological status at this point, but I'm so tired of living in fear. I think there's a really great analogy that my therapist used: You're out in the water near the shore and a big wave is coming...you're constantly wondering when is it going to hit me? Constantly thinking about how once it hits you, you're going to drown, how you'll get sucked under the riptide, how hard and how strong the weight of that water will hit you. How disorienting it will be. Well I've decided I don't want to keep watching for that wave. I honestly just want that wave to hit me. As my surfing partner told me, when a wave hits you, your instinct is to fight and swim your way to the surface, but in the end it's not the right way to handle a wave. The best way to react when a wave hits you is to just ride it out. Just lay motionless until it spits you out. You can literally sometimes watch the wave pass over you sometimes. You can feel something happening to your body, but you realize that you yourself are okay. I'm not sure if that makes sense, but it has seemed to make things much clearer for me. I say let that wave come, I'll ride it out and see where it takes me. If it's pain that it brings then I will learn to live with that pain and shape a life that appreciates every second. If it brings joy then it will be a welcome friend as well.
I'm not trying to say that my way is better, but I think I've reached a point in my life where I just can't move forward without learning this piece of the puzzle. It will determine whether I join a trial. Whether I start a family. Whether I need to make arrangements for my future.