Dating with a Disability: When The Competition Is Yourself


Love was also a synonym for tenderness, security, prestige, comfort, success.-Paulo Coelho

It is a lot to unpack when faced with the reality of adjusting to the diagnosis of having a vocal disorder. Not just the disorder itself, but the side effects of what insecurities it can bring. Mood swings, self-doubt, vulnerability,  low self-esteem, tears, you name it. It is not only a physical disability but a mental disability that hinders you from living in the present as you continuously focus on the past. I was yearning for my life to go back to my normalcy. Back to my comfort zone. Back to my definition on what I viewed as success. Meanwhile, in dating, I  didn’t realize that as my voice condition and external circumstances would get worse; those same insecurities would become impactful and reveal themselves frequently within my relationship.

My boyfriend met me as a 29 year old woman, employed, well traveled , with a savings for a down payment on a future house.

To Now, a 30 year old woman, unemployed ,(as my previous job could no longer accommodate my vocal disorder), full time student living off student loans and had exhausted my savings.

I wasn’t the same financially secure confident person my boyfriend had met before (when everything was going right in my life). I constantly thought, What man would want to date this type of woman given her condition(s)? ( The 2016 woman knows that in order to ask a man to bring something to the table we should have something to bring as well).I thought I was being punished by God. Why would God strip away everything I worked so hard for AND try to prevent me from fulfilling MY purpose ?

In order for the true energy of love to penetrate your soul, your soul must be as if you had just been born.

God was revealing to me that, just as a Christmas tree is adorned with so many ornaments and lights, you eventually forget what the original tree looked like before. God wanted me to see who I was before all of the accolades, before the multiple savings accounts; he wanted me naked with my vulnerabilties, fears, and insecurities in order to expose the tenacity of my faith. However, I didn’t want my boyfriend , nor was I ready, to see all of my vulnerabilities so soon. Not in the dating phase! Ugh! Lol

So, I became very apologetic to him for where I was in my life, very apologetic that at times I wasn’t able to speak life into him anymore. I had nothing positive to say except to spew out the hurt from my situation. My worldview became my venom; attacking him and swallowing the hardships of what life was giving me. I needed healing. I needed God’s comfort, my balance and His peace. I prayed that my emotional rollercoaster wasn’t affecting my boyfriend but I knew his vision for a future ‘us’ was becoming more and more apprehensive. He told me to “just focus on you and we’ll be fine”.

The important things always stay; what we lose are the things we thought were important but which are, in fact useless, like the false power we use to control the energy of love.

I needed to accept that who I am now, may not be the 30 year old woman I envisioned 6-7 years ago nor does my bank account reflect it–but I’m still standing. I needed to let go of my past and reconstruct my sense of self, for God saw a bigger purpose than my own. In order for my relationship to flourish I needed to flourish in ways that stretched me out of my comfort zone. I recognized that although I viewed myself as being a tarnished coin, my value never changed. God just needed to bring me through a journey, as he was buffering me along the way, in order to shine brighter than before. Self-acceptance is what I needed to stop fighting within myself . I no longer wanted to be my own competition. I wanted to be partners and embrace it. I no longer wanted to compete against God’s goal or vision for myself, within myself. My goal is to love myself, accept where I am, trust my process and know God has the rest. That’s what my boyfriend wants for me. That’s what God wants for me. And now, that’s the only thing I need to act on for me.

Love is the only thing that activates our intelligence and our creativity, that purifies and liberates us.




**All quotes are from Paulo Coelho’s book the Zahir. ** 


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: