Amy Pilkington
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Amy Pilkington

Keep going, but how?

Photo by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash

It doesn’t really matter that I’m not capable of doing something right at this point. Writers gotta write, right? If you read my last article, you understand why I’m not capable. If you haven’t, I’ll sum it up by saying it’s out of my control.

I’m going to ramble a bit because I’m trying to work through some issues and get my mindset right. I need to be more productive. I don’t need my negative attitude holding me back. I need to keep moving forward. Basically, this article isn’t for you. It’s for me.

My daughter graduated high school last week. I walked a decent distance to get into the stadium. I was tired when I got there, but I managed. I climbed the bleachers. It was exhausting and took every bit of strength I had, but I managed. I sat in a light breeze with my hand shaking every time I brushed my hair out of my face. I almost jammed my finger up my nose (again), but I managed. I climbed down the bleachers. I was tired long before I reached the bottom, but I managed. I had to walk up an incline to get out of the side gate at the stadium. It was ridiculously exhausting, but I managed. I stood for what seemed like an eternity. My legs shook, but I managed.

See it? I manage. I just keep managing. I feel like I’m just treading water. I manage. Some days it feels like I merely exist. I just manage. And I keep right on managing, but it’s not enough to just manage life. I need to find a way to be okay with what’s going on in my life.

Photo by Yusuf Evli on Unsplash

I’ve been doing strengthening exercises for a while now, and for a little bit it helped me feel like I was doing something. It gave me a little bit of hope. Don’t get me wrong. I do believe it has made a big difference. The problem is, I feel like I may have plateaued. After I got home from graduation, I felt proud. I did it! I made it! I’m getting better! The next day, I wasn’t as sore as I thought I would be. I really expected far worse. I was happy about it. I was too sore to exercise that day, but that was expected. The day after next was different. The muscle in my calf felt like it was frozen. I don’t mean it hurt to move. I’m used to that. I mean it didn’t want to move. It’s now day four, and it’s still really stiff. I’ve tried stretching it out. Very little change. Welp, this is new, and W…T…F? Day four, and I still can’t exercise. I just keep trying to stretch that muscle and worry that I’m losing the progress I made. I just keep managing.

It’s not enough. It’s just not enough.

I was still climbing trees in my 30s. I was doing cartwheels and back bends when I was pushing 40. And now…now, I can’t stand up and hold my grandchildren. The last time I did was early December during a Christmas party. After that, my arms were so exhausted that my hand shook bad enough I was struggling getting a fork in my mouth. I gave up and put my fork down. I was still very much in denial and hiding things — even with family. I kept hiding things up until…oh, I don’t know. Last week when I published the last article.

I do a lot of sitting, and when you’re sitting there’s not a lot to do but a lot of thinking. I sit and think, and the more I sit and think the more I want to cry. And that’s why this article is for me and not for you. I’m trying to work things out in my head and make peace with all of it. I don’t need someone else to help me with that. Nobody can do that but me. I have to do it on my own.

Photo by Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash

So, let me try finding positive things. Well, I can’t really write now, and that was a big part of my life. I can’t go out and explore the world, and that was something I really enjoyed. I can’t do a lot of things with my children or grandchildren, and that was something that gave me a lot of joy. But, I can hobble around a bit, and that’s more than I could do a few months ago. It’s not enough. It’s just not enough. I’m thinking I need to find something new. I need a new purpose. A new goal. A new hobby. A new…something. Anything. I need to find something to enjoy to breathe new life into my dreary existence. That’s what I need to do. Now then. What can a half-crippled, brain dead person with tremors and tics do? And that’s where I’m stuck right now.

So, what have I accomplished with my rambling? I know what I need to do. I need to find a new ‘thing.’ For now, I’m going to mourn losing all my ‘things’ and then try to figure out how to find a new ‘thing.’ Until then, I guess I’ll just keep managing.



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Amy Dodd Pilkington

Amy Dodd Pilkington


Pilkington is an aspiring beach bum who enjoys travel and sweet tea. This published author has been featured in Health Magazine and many other publications.