Revelations

Drake  @ Barclays

By: Connor Lenahan

This past October, I went to go see Drake at the TD Garden in Boston. Early in the show, he played “Crew Love” off of Take Care. The notable part about this song coming on is the line “I really like who I’m becoming.” It took me a little while after the show to realize that Aubrey Graham had succinctly summed up in six words my exact feelings about the past year.

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In May of last year Abington Heights had their Prom. That night was important. For the first time I was able to crystalize what makes me who I am. You could call it a mental breakdown, a rant, a delusion spurred on by exhaustion (it occurred at 4AM after all) among myriad other things, but that doesn’t change the effect it had on me. I sat around a fire pit with my friends Matt Gronsky, Pat Haggerty and Ryan Gilbert and proceeded to go off on a tangent that lasted somewhere over an hour and left me shaking. At the end of duo of “Runaway” and “Hell of a Life” by Kanye West off of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, you can hear him trying to catch his breath after the power of both of those tracks. This is approximately how I felt.

I ranted about living with my bone condition and how I was able to keep my head up through all of the injuries I’ve had in my life. I came to a few conclusions. It’s otherworldly easy to keep the faith that everything will be okay when you have friends and family looking after you at every turn telling you that they are there to help.

But still, how do I deal with the reality that I could break something at any moment? It’s tough, and I admit, I’m more afraid that I appear. I make jokes constantly because I don’t like to dwell on it. But watch carefully. I walk alongside walls to prevent falling. I waddle to not slip. I take precautions to protect myself at every turn. I’m horrified of what would happen to me if I didn’t. I’m lucky to have only broken my legs (and an arm) a few times. I could have severely fractured my spine or, god forbid, my head. I have to find ways of appearing bulletproof. If other people believe that I’m indestructible, then I’ll start to buy into it too.

The most important thing was explicitly stating my motto for my life. I walk (or roll) around with a confidence that I can do whatever the hell I want to if I put my mind to it. Now, I’m realistic of course, I’m not going to be named NBA MVP anytime soon, but there’s no reason for me to believe that I couldn’t work in the league someday. I don’t have control over my bone condition. I never really will. But I’m making damn sure to take control everywhere else I can in my life. I know I’m going to be successful. Why? No kid should have to go through what I’ve had to face in my life and I would give anything to ensure that no one ever has to live with Osteogenesis Imperfecta ever again. But I kept my head up. There were plenty of times I could have said, “fuck it, I’m done, I’m not going to win.” I never did. A large part of that comes from the support around me, and the rest is knowing that if I didn’t let this beat me, my time would come. I know it will.

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The time came. I was patient. Then on August 31st, 2013, I moved to Boston, MA. Now I was going to finally get to start living like I wanted to. I met incredible people all over campus and the city. I made friends quickly because people were nice enough to ignore my shameless self-promotion online and read this blog. I have people I could go to all over Boston to help me. Coming from a high school of less than 2,000 people to a school of over 15,000 would have been daunting if it weren’t for the incredible people of Boston University that have been looking out for me every step of the way.

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I want to go back to the support thing for a second. It took me months to realize this, but I’m happy I did. Breaking my left shin was the best thing to happen to me this year. Allow me to elaborate.

The break was only a few short weeks after Prom. My revelation from that night was still fresh on my mind and due to the break it was almost all I was thinking about since I no longer needed to be worried about high school. I’d always had a great group of friends looking out for me throughout my life, but this was something foreign to me. I was never alone when I was at home with the break. I think there were something like eleven people all crammed into my room the afternoon I returned home from the hospital to show me that this wasn’t going to interrupt anything. They weren’t going anywhere.

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I got texts every second of every day and people coming over to visit at all hours. When we had a graduation party the house was packed with people that wanted to come check in on how I was feeling. Words do not exist for the emotions I felt because of that. Nothing will ever top that, and if it does, it’s going to be monumental.

No one wins a fight alone. I’ve had some big battles, but I always have the best backup. That’s why I love my life. That’s why you’ll always see me positive. I’m blessed with incredible people and experiences. We all have challenges sure, but I’ve been able to get through mine time and time again.

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Who says I can’t conquer the world? I try to challenge myself to do new things all the time. Last year when I broke my leg I challenged myself to write this blog. Saying it was a wise decision is an understatement. Now I need a new challenge seeing as I am back walking on a 100% healed leg. Maybe writing even more. That’s probably a good start. Writing makes me happy, so why not do it every day? That’s the new goal.

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There are plenty of people I can thank for helping me get to where I am now, but that list would never end. If you’re reading this right now, you’re on the list. If there’s one take away from this past year, it’s this: I really like who I’m becoming. And I’m not stopping anytime soon. Bring it on 2014.

Connor Lenahan (@ConnorLenahan) is the founder and editor-in-chief of Connorlenahan.com. He is a freshman at Boston University, majoring in journalism. He can be emailed at lenahan@bu.edu

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8 thoughts on “Revelations”

  1. Connor, your attitude always amazes me. I love talking to you about sports, pop-culture, writing, everything! You know the Joyces always root for you. Keep trusting in yourself, keep writing, and have a great year. I know you will.

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