Monday, January 7, 2013

This Year Will Be Different... Really

Happy New Year!

First, let me send you my wishes for a successful new year! 
What do you mean by "successful"?
Well, I thought of wishing you good health - but what if my health gets worse? Then I thought I would wish you would have a more peaceful year - but how can I have  peace when I'm running to all these doctor appointments?

If it's going to be...

I heard this great saying by Joyce Meyer. This woman has overcome horrible sexual abuse issues and leads an incredibly victorious life. One of her favorite phrases is -
If it's going to be, it's up to me!
I used to hate that phrase! I'm not proud to say that, but it's the truth. Have you noticed that we often hate hearing "pep talks" and self-improvement slogans when we are struggling the most? I have been living with chronic pain for over five years and then added chronic fatigue to the mix almost two years ago... wow, has it really been that long?? Anyway, over the course of these five years, I have spent most of it less than victorious. I have had more pity parties than I can count, I've lived angry, terrified, mystified, and stupefied. I think it's safe to say that anyone living with a chronic  illness can relate to this in some way. One of the lessons I am in the process of learning is that -
I control my level of suffering!
Many of you may have already learned this great lesson. What can I say, I'm stubborn. I didn't want to know that I could choose  whether or not I was happy on any given day. It was far easier to spend my time chasing doctors, reading books, researching websites, and wallowing in my agony. Please know that I'm not trying to sound trite. Living with chronic illness(es) IS terrifying and we SHOULD do our own research and keep ourselves well informed. But when the dust settles from your flurry of activity and you are now faced with the rest of your life - what then?

Choosing Your Future

Most of us were high functioning adults before being hit with pain and fatigue. We had big plans for our lives. While some of those plans are no longer feasible, we can make new ones! An interesting thing happened to me the other day. I was having a very hard day and could barely get out of bed. My friend called and she shared her idea for setting up a support network. As soon as we started brainstorming the initial concept, I felt my energy increasing as my excitement rose! Why would that be? Why should one little idea have such a big impact?
Because it created a possibility!
There are days when it feels like we have lost everything. But we have also gained so much! Now that you have all these experiences and knowledge under your belt, wouldn't it be awesome to share it with others?

There are many organizations that need volunteers. Perhaps you can become a support group leader or you could write a blog (there's always room for more). Even if you are not well enough to do as much as you would like, decide what you can do while respecting your own health needs, and put yourself out there. See how you feel after helping someone else. 

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I pray that this gives you some ideas for your 2013 goals. I look forward to hearing them! Who knows who you could inspire. Before you know it, we could have an army of people helping people.
Imagine that!
Yours in health,