Last night I saw my favourite band. Not like my favourite band of the year or of the decade. I am talking decades of favourite. I have seen them multiple times in concert, and bought VIP tickets to meet them backstage four times (plus snuck backstage to a concert as a teenager, to which I was kicked out by security).
This first part isn’t about running. It isn’t about epilepsy. It’s about life.
This is the band that when I was a teenager and found out I was epileptic or was being bullied I listened to. This is the band that when I moved to a new city and knew no one and felt alone, I listened to. This is the music that I would put in my headphones when I was running. The lyrics and sound are cryptic, but also emphasize that we are not alone.
All the VIP times that I have met them I have not been able to speak to them. I have been there, right there, able to have a conversation and yet I never did. It wasn’t anxiety. I was just completely starstruck. (I also did not know what to say. What do you say? “You’re my favourite band ever?” “I am a huge fan?” “Thanks for having music that has been there for me in the best and worst times of my life?”) No other celebrity, band or performer has done that. And I was going to their show again.
So last night, I was determined to speak to them. Still didn’t know what I would say exactly, but I would say something.
And I did!
I told them the story about all my previous attempts to talk to them. I babbled more than usual (even for me). They signed my shirt and were perfectly lovely about talking. They were casual, relaxed, joking. They complimented me wearing their band tshirt (I was the first person on the tour to both be wearing that shirt and to ask for it to be signed!). These musicians, each and every one, who I have adored for 30-ish years, were both absolutely engaging and interesting. They were also sympathetic and interested in my awkward VIP story. They asked me about it in more detail, and even said that it was impressive that I finally got the courage to do it. In the short period of time I had with them, they absolutely blew my mind with how down to earth they were, these amazing artists. I was still awkward, despite my experience in public speaking and meeting new people, but I still succeeded in having that conversation that I have never managed to have.
This is life.
So this is the part about running and epilepsy. It’s about taking risks. Whether you want to register for a race or walk around the block, try it. Just getting out is powerful and a step forward. Epilepsy. Make your goal to be seizure free for a year, or just for a day. It may take you YEARS to get there, but that’s not the point. It’s making that goal. Whatever it takes to motivate you to your goal, imagine it. We all have the things that make us similar: fears, wishes, dreams. We’ve been scared. We’ve tried something and failed, we’ve been let down, we’ve lost hope. This is life. It’s also about all the things we have already done, how far we have come ourselves, the accomplishments and the lives we live. Try, fail or succeed, then try again. This is life.
Life is waiting for you
It’s all messed up but we’re alive
Life is waiting for you
It’s all messed up but we’ll survive