there's something that makes me very thankful for my diagnosis. it's that i've learned to do hard things. and to do them, not looking for praise or recognition, but because it's necessary. and to do them without complaining, without being angry. without feeling like it's unfair.
of course, it's taken me awhile to feel this way. i can remember vividly last winter, the severity of my flare quadrupled and i was FAR from serene about it. i freaked out, i complained, i hated the "unfairness" of it all, etc etc. i was working only part time, but i remember mornings when getting out of bed seemed impossible. nights where i slept maybe two hours and then had to go to my physically demanding job the next day. it was hard. and it didn't let up. and because of that, i learned to do things that are hard- something i really think our generation is lacking in.
don't get me wrong, i don't intend for this post to be holier-than-thou or preachy. if it weren't for my diagnosis and being FORCED to learn to do hard things, i wouldn't be so used to it or so accepting of them myself. but that's the point. i hear people say all of the time how they don't want to do something because it's "hard". they hesitate to enter certain circumstances because they'll be tough or challenging. and they have a choice to avoid that.
ever notice how tough your grandparents are? your great-grandparents? your parents, even? there was a time (and there are still places, of course but i'm talking about US HERE) where there wasn't necessarily a CHOICE in matters that were difficult or hard. there were hard things that had to be done for survival. to thrive. because there wasn't an "easier" way yet. and people just DID THEM. because what was their other option? there wasn't one. if it was a freezing morning, in the middle of a snowstorm and the cows had to be milked--THEY MILKED THEM. what else could they do?
THIS is why i'm grateful for my diagnosis. because it hasn't given me much of a choice. those mornings i mentioned where i hadn't slept, felt like i'd been hit by a train, was in so much pain it was hard to walk, couldn't stay out of the bathroom, etc but went to work anyway?? it was either that, or stay in bed and have not even HALF of a life. which i did, by the way. there were times i just stayed in bed. times i was ordered to by my doctor, and times i just didn't have the strength to do anything else. but spend enough time in bed and you start to get restless, no matter how dead you feel. i had the choice to live less than half of a life and avoid "hard" things that caused me more pain and sickness than i was already experiencing....or to try and live as much of a life as i could be DOING those hard things.
i chose to do them. some days, i choose not to. it's not always easy to do things that are difficult, even when a circumstance like mine makes almost EVERYTHING difficult. but then you go to the cancer center for your treatments. you meet people in their seventies and eighties battling cancer who can tell you stories about the wars they've fought. they're not afraid of hard things, and because of that, they're fighting.
we should ALL be fighting too. so things are hard? so what. LIFE is hard. but that's also why it's rewarding. let's buck up and face it.