Wednesday, June 1, 2011

An Anniversary

It's been almost one year since I started this blog. At a time in my life when I couldn't see the end to tunnel. When everything was closing in on me and remission or even improvement were far off concepts that neither my mind nor my body could grapple with much less achieve. It too a lot of prayer and long, hopeless nights to allow me to make a few decisions that eventually lead me to the peaceful and much deserved "happy" place that I am in now. And I am thankful to God and my family for giving me the strength to make the tough decisions I once made so that today my life could be 100x better. But those decisions did not come without a lot of sacrifice and sadness on my part. And tonight, as I said goodbye to my former students during their promotion ceremony I was reminded of how much I gave up, not because I wanted to, but because I had to. It was a bitter sweet moment to see all my old students again, but I was so happy to realize that none of them resented me or my decision to leave. Instead they looked for me with open arms and thanked me for everything I had taught them. I realized that while I may have left them physically, the knowledge and the experiences I left them with will last a lifetime. And that to me, is the greatest gift. I can close the KIPP chapter of my life and move on to newer, different journeys knowing that for a brief moment in time I touched the lives those young people and for that, I am a better person, with or without scleroderma.

It's been one incredible year and I have only good things to look forward to. I may not ever be "cured" but I know that recovery and remission IS possible and I truly believe that I'm well on my way. To all of you who have spent the last year (few years) following me and my progress, I thank you. For your patience, kind words, prayers and love, thank you. And as I always say: I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I am where I was intended to be. Happy Anniversary Scleroderma (Diagnosed May 12, 2007) you've changed my life for the better.

Be still, be well.

Monday, May 2, 2011

It is solved by walking...

I know that God exists and that he is by my side because:

4 years ago walking 1 mile was very tiring and difficult
3 years ago walking 1 mile was impossible
2 years ago I couldn't walk a block without losing my breath (lung fibrosis)
1 year ago I was too busy to walk anywhere
Yesterday morning I walked/ran 5 miles without stopping:

This morning I felt no pain. This morning I felt at peace. This morning I realized that anything and everything IS possible.

Be still. Be well.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

40 Days and 40 Nights

It takes failure to appreciate success. It takes disappointment to understand happiness.

Perhaps you have been wondering why my blog entries have been so sporadic and inconsistent. That is because, thankfully my health is very stable lately. (Even if I can't say the same for my personal life)

Although I have been disappointed that I cannot try to have a baby until next year (so the doc said). It didn't make me feel like a failure because I know I have come a long way and that when the time comes, God will bless me with a beautiful, healthy child.

From my work life to my family life, I have been graced with much disappointment lately and it is because of those disappointments that I am beginning to understand what it means to be truly happy. People I once thought I could trust have betrayed me. Family that I once believed in have let me down. But I'm slowly realizing, that I am not the one that matters. They are the ones that need to be at peace with themselves, not with me. Although their circumstances and the pain they have caused me and my loved ones saddens me greatly, I will move forward with my life wishing them only the best with what how they've chosen to live.

I have been fortunate that these minor daily stresses have not had an impact on my health since I have learned many coping strategies in the last year that I am using frequently. 10-15 min of silence/meditation a day. Exercise. Water. Prayer. Laughter. Dancing and Music. And of course writing. These things along with my wonderful support system and passion for life have allowed me to continue getting better amidst all the drama.

There are many uncertain things in my future, but I know that happiness and peace is definitely in the cards. I hope and expect only the best for myself and those around me and it's not the pills or the doctor's visit that will make it so but rather my mentality, strength, perseverance and enduring faith that will bring good things to come.

Be still. Be well.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Hello Again

"I will get down on my knees...and I will pray" -Jewel

It's been awhile...I haven't been as consistent with this anymore as I'd like to be. Suppose that could be a good thing though. It means life is calm at the moment, which is always nice. So as usual, in an effort to be brief here is an update.

1. I'm still working out, pretty hardcore actually. (lots of Zumba and jogging!)
2. I'm very cold- which triggers the Raynaud's, which means moving my hands and doing just about anything becomes impossible. (trying to cope with the winter season, never fun)
3. I need new glasses.
4. Two doctor's appointments this week. A)consultation with OBGYN just to "see" B)Rehumy appointment on Fri for quarterly check-up and to officially determine if Lupe and I can start a family any time soon.
5. Work is still great, possibly a new opportunity to come in that department (I'll keep you posted)
6. I am at peace.

And I'm still working on becoming a better cook. I have had some successes and some terrible failures in that arena, but I'm glad that I'm still trying. (Not sure lupe is though...he's my taste tester)

I feel truly blessed these days, and truly believe that only better things lie ahead. Say a prayer for me and KEEP HOPE ALIVE! (I'm feeling silly)

Be still, be well.


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Icing on the Cake

"You don't buy a cake to look at it. You buy it to eat it. So of course I want to have my cake and eat it too, you dumbass." - me

OMG! I can't believe that I have written since last year! (lol, lame I know). But seriously, it has been almost a month since I last sorry about that, the holidays sort of ransacked me and I didn't have five minutes to breathe. But, as of today, back to work, "back to life, back to reality."

If you've kept up with my blog since its inception you are well aware that 2010 was a very challenging, insightful, scary, exciting and pretty amazing year for me. From new jobs to new medicine and from old fears to reviving dead dreams. I have been on an emotional, physical and spiritual roller coaster that I could not have made it off of without my loved ones and of course God.

In 2011 I am looking forward to fun and hopefully more pleasant adventures, but to be honest I wouldn't replace anything that I went through. It all taught me many valuable lessons that I will take with me for the rest of my life. I learned that life balance is more important that money or "stuff." I realized that I can still do what I love without risking a healthy lifestyle. I learned that family comes first and that the mind is more powerful than most of us realize.

In 2011 I resolve to:
1. Become a healthier and better cook.
2. Not take myself so seriously.
3. Do more to get published.
4. Love my husband more and more.
5. Not be disappointed about things that are beyond my control.

In 2007, right before my official diagnoses, a young high school girl came up to me after a poetry reading I read at at the Holocaust Museum and said the following: "Wow, you were amazing. When I grow up I want to do that. I want to do what you just did." In that moment, as I remember it now, I believe that I said to myself that my life was complete. I had done more in those 3min on stage than I ever intended to. I had accomplished more in one evening than some will in a lifetime. It is perhaps then, that life, the greater good or just fate blessed me (and yes I mean blessed) with "the sclero."

You see, this very evening I realized that this illness has allowed me to see and enjoy the simpler things of life that so many of us take for granted. On that chilly night in February of 2007, I changed a life forever with my words, my greater purpose was fulfilled. And so, God, in all his wisdom is now allowing me to sit back, relax, and enjoy what I had been missing all along. Lightening on a rainy day in January, a juicy mango in June, birds flying above still waters, my own body waking up every day, miraculously. Since that moment (ironically at the Holocaust Museum), everything that I have had the priveledge (yes I mean that) of experiencing has just been icing on the (cup)cake.

Be still, be well.