I am writing this with a dictation software. My wrists are in agony and some of my fingers are as well. I spoke to the Dean for students with disabilities yesterday, and had a discussion about deadlines, papers, and my disability. We figured out that I am in a flareup, and that that is why I have not been completing my work. I have been subconsciously avoiding writing a paper that I think I will enjoy because my wrists hurt.
I have since had two professors suggests my dictation software. But I am not used to using it, and it is really hard to write papers through dictation rather than with my hands. I need to get used to the software, but I do not know how, much less how to do it quickly in order to get a paper written.
I think I am also fighting the idea that I need to use it and have been since I bought it two years ago. This is another part of getting used to being disabled instead of temporarily able-bodied. It is a struggle to remember that there are things I can't do, that there are things I shouldn't do, and that it's not my fault. I am having a negative emotional reaction, such that it is hard to speak this without crying. I think I've adjusted to mobility issues, and to asking for help when I can't walk or at least shouldn't be walking far, but it is a lot harder to recognize and to admit that I can't do schoolwork at times because I am in too much pain to do so. I have not fully made peace with what my disability does to me, and having multiple suggestions to do exactly what I'm doing right now somehow makes it worse.
I don't know how to make this better. I know how to take care my wrists, and I know how to take care of my hip and my knee, so that with time they will heal. It's the emotional stuff that I can't–but I don't know how to handle. There are a lot of “should” and “should not” statements in my head. Things like, “I should have written this weeks ago,” or “I should be able to get this done now,” or “I should not ask for two extensions from the same professor on the same paper,” and all of this based on a conception formed a in high school while I was still able bodied. I feel like I'm annoying my professor by asking for the accommodations that are my right.
In short, I am struggling with my limitations, and I think with internalized able-ism. I am not sure how to move forward from here.