Friday, October 24, 2008

Reason to Believe


Here's another excerpt from my pending book, Despite Lupus: How to Live Well with a Chronic Illness, which is well on its way to becoming a tight, concise, well-composed manuscript, thanks to my editor, SFB. This short snippet is taken from Chapter 1 titled "Choose Well", from the section, "You Can Do It". It refers to your ability to make the effort to live well, despite the obstacles that may be ahead of you. Let me know what you think!

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When I think back to the reasons I decided to write this book, one thing becomes abundantly clear. I did not contemplate writing this book on a day when my joints were swollen to double their normal size, or the pain was so excruciating I couldn’t even lift a glass to my lips. Those days certainly gave me the background I needed to write the manuscript, but the impetus for the book came during days when I felt really good and Lupus mysteriously fell quiet. It was on those high-quality days when I was reminded how wonderful life can be. I realized I was still capable of feeling normal, still competent enough to hope, and blessed enough to believe. That’s why I wrote this book – to celebrate moments like those and to remind others that it’s still possible to live well, despite Lupus.


Over the years, when I haven’t been able to believe so unabashedly, my mom has given me bountiful bits of wisdom and support, never failing me when I needed her the most. It was one of these times, when I was incapable of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, that she gave me this phrase, one that I’ve repeated and shared many times since then.



If he takes you to it, he'll take you through it.


Regardless of your religious or spiritual orientation, a statement like this has to give you hope, consolation, and encouragement. Just believing that you have the stuff to make it through might be enough to get you there, but coupled with the notion that someone else is watching out for you has to be the greatest security blanket available. While the unfamiliarity and insecurity of the place you are today is daunting, scary, and uncomfortable, imagine the strength, courage, and hope that’s welling up within you, just waiting to be called to duty. “Victim of a chronic illness” is probably a label you never imagined you’d have, and certainly not one you ever wanted. In fact, you don’t really understand how you got it in the first place. One day it wasn’t applicable, the next day it was, and it happened without your consent, input, or approval. But life has a way of charting its own course, and surprising you from time to time with the stops along the way. It’s up to you to readjust your compass and rework the travel agenda, knowing that if you stick with it, you’ll reach your destination in the long run.

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