How do you know you are important to people? What is a sign that you are not only loved but really important to them?
The other day, my dearest friend told me she was getting a tattoo. I thought, “OK, that is great, I’m glad you decided to do that.” Then she showed a picture of the artwork — and I cried. It was a shark holding the blue Charcot-Marie-Tooth awareness ribbon. The picture she sent me was similar to this one. She was getting a tattoo for me! I found it incredible that somebody would do this for me.
When I asked her why she would do this for me, her answer was simple, yet powerful. She said that she is proud of me and how I handle my disease. I have Charcot- Marie-Tooth disease type 1A. She wants everyone to know about CMT, and that I am a CMT warrior. How can I argue with that? I may not always agree that I handle my CMT well, but she reminds me all the time how far I have come in my life despite having the issues CMT brings. Whenever I feel defeated by my CMT, I think of this.
I often feel defeated and helpless. It stems mostly from not being able to do something or falling or dropping things. I know that these are small things, and I try not to let them get me down or stop me from living my life. Some days are easier than others. I look at the photo she sent me of her tattoo with my initial in the ribbon, and that picture reminds me of the people who love me unconditionally. That picture reminds that I am capable and CMT has nothing on me. That picture also reminds me of the people who see me and not my disability.
The fact that my friend got a tattoo for me still makes me teary-eyed but in a good way. We have been friends for a very long time, and we’ve been through a lot together. I am always amazed at how fiercely she loves her friends, who are family to her. I am more than proud to have her in my tribe! This act is a constant reminder of what I can do and with the unconditional love of a friend.
Note: Charcot-Marie-Tooth News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Charcot-Marie-Tooth News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Charcot-Marie-Tooth.