Macular Degeneration Gives Us Permission to Live Our Best Lives 

You guys! I’m so excited! I finally took the plunge and ordered a new desk for myself last summer. I know boring, right? Well, it’s about time... I’m 38 years old, and I just now have my own space to sit and work. It took about four months for it to arrive due to the pandemic and it came disassembled in a box, but I’m so happy it’s finally here.

Buying a new desk may not seem like a huge thing, but before my macular degeneration diagnosis, I struggled to live in the present. I saved almost all of my extra money planning for a better... future? Not anymore. None of us knows what our future holds. True, there are some things that require planning. But life is constantly changing and evolving.

Living life as it comes

I don’t know about you, but I certainly didn’t plan for macular degeneration in my future. This really opened my eyes and changed my perspective about life. So, I no longer live there. I choose to stay in today. Sure, I have retirement plans and save for the kids for college and all of that jazz, but I have gotten really good at living life as it comes. Part of living in the present for me has been doing things I need in order to make my NOW the best it can be.

Buying a new desk (actually an entire new bedroom set - eek!) is one of those things. Having my own workspace and perfect-for-us bedroom has been such a blessing. I’m on my computer all the time. I’m either teaching my students online, working on lesson plans, and checking emails, or attending zoom meetings for therapy or writing articles and advocating here at maculardegeneration.net.

All we have is now

Y’all, I’m a mom. I have been guilty of making sure my kiddos have everything they need, and then thinking about what I might need. Well, that just doesn’t work for me anymore, friends. Don’t get me wrong, my boys will always come first. It’s just that I now see the importance of doing things for myself as well.

Plus, it isn’t a matter of them vs. me. It’s me loving myself and taking care of my own needs so I can take care of them. Macular degeneration has given me the permission I needed to live my best life. We only get one. I don’t know how long I’ll keep all of my vision, and that is more than enough for me to start really living NOW.

Pivot

Soooo much has happened and changed in my life in the last few years. I’m finally at a place where I can start really living and not just surviving. Now, I make it a point to live my best life all the time. Honestly, it was HARD to work in the middle of the beautiful chaos of a busy family of four, two cats, and a dog. It was time to pivot and start doing things differently.

    I NEEDED my own quiet space to work uninterrupted.
    I NEEDED a serene spot to think.
    I NEEDED to show my children that it’s okay to prioritize yourself sometimes.
    I NEEDED to tell myself that my time mattered too.
    Shoot, I even NEEDED my books and papers out of the dining room for goodness sake!

I’m no longer sitting at the dining room table trying to focus on work while the kids and pets cause a ruckus around me. I didn’t know just how much I needed my own space to work until my desk arrived.

Feng Shui

Feng Shui, or Chinese geomancy, is a traditional Chinese practice that harmonizes people with their surrounding areas using energy forces from one’s environment. My Feng Shui was all kinds of distorted trying to work at the dinner table in the middle of the house. Now, I can work in peace and BE in peace to calm my mind when my worries start trying to take over.

Liberation

As I mentioned earlier, my new desk came unassembled in a box.

Phew! You guys! I didn’t have to build this thing on my own. I have a loving man in my life who offered to build it for me. But, I wanted to do it myself. I needed to own this desk and its Feng Shui in its entirety.

It took me three hours, one hole in my hand (yes, literally), some blood, and even a few tears... but I did it! The hardest part was trying to see the tiny holes in which to place the screws. With a little flashlight and a lotta patience, deep breathing, and moral support, I got it done on my own.

Give yourself permission,
Andrea Junge

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