Too often than not, I get asked a question frequently from strangers or the occasional rude guest at my booth that just rubs me the wrong way. It takes on many forms and is often phrased based on the conversation or situation at hand.
“Why do you have a job when you struggle so much at it?”
“Why bother working all these hours when your body/mind can’t handle it?”
“The government can take care of you, why keep this job when you can be out having fun?”
Usually in these situations, I’m unable to answer the way I want to and I just hastily answer “I just love what I do.”
In reality, that is true. I enjoy meeting people from all over the world who come to my booth at the happiest place on earth.
But my reasoning for working isn’t all sunshine and Mickey bars.
I am the kind of person raised to take pride in what I do, and sitting at home all day tends to make me even more depressed. I battle a lot of demons in the many diagnosis I carry. My eyes are in pain a lot and my mind recently, although better now with treatment, is hurting just as bad sometimes. Sitting at home in front of the TV is just not what I want to do with my life while I sit collecting a check.
To me, despite my issues, I’m worth more than that.
I work twice as hard to make it to where I’m at. The many programs out there to house me and pay me for food and such denied me because I’m too high functioning or there isn’t enough funding. I have friends I grew up with who have various disabilties who are stuck on waiting list after waiting list hoping that they’ll get that help they need.
I’m impatient. Why sit on my butt all day waiting for a phone call that may or may not happen?
I work because I refuse to settle for less. I want pride knowing can earn my right in this world like anyone else can. My differences make the chase for the American Dream harder, but to me, it’s worth it.
Because I am worth it.