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Tag Archives: gratitude

How Gratitude Has Led Me To Give Back To Others

“Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out.”
~ John Wooden

 

As a sit here reflecting on the book launch of “I Don’t Dwell,” I’m in awe.  When I think of my recovery, a deep sense of gratitude fills my body and tears begin to well up.  I think of Lou Gehrig who had ALS, when he said “I feel like I’m the luckiest man alive”.

practices to settle the mindHow did I survive that car accident at 6 years old?

How did I survive being suicidal with bipolar?

How did I survive with being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis?

I survived because I had no choice.  I like to think that I was in control of my life, but looking back I can see that I had very little control.  I was placed on this Earth for reasons unknown to me, only known by God.  As Einstein once said “God doesn’t throw dice”.  There are no mistakes and no luck; there is a divine plan unknown to us.

The only thing I know for certain is that I can control how I react and respond to my thoughts. That sounds so simple, but it wasn’t easy. It took time to see that I had thoughts, but they were not my thoughts.  Through my five minute daily practice I was starting to get separation from my thoughts.  It took a lot of vigilance to stick with the practice. My thoughts were in my face, yelling and screaming at me that I wasn’t good enough or wasting my time. These thoughts were impossible to ignore at times, but the more I ignored the mind the quieter the mind became.

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Advice for Those Diagnosed With Any Ailment

diagnosedI have been diagnosed with bipolar, multiple sclerosis (MS), migraines, psoriasis, and psoriatic arthritis. Suffering was a way of life.

When I was diagnosed with MS I was terrified, I knew nothing about it. I was in the hospital with a lot of symptoms (unable to walk, vision issues, half of the body was numb) but no diagnosis for a few weeks. The doctors at the hospital weren’t too helpful with providing information. Although I was suffering a lot of mental anguish with this diagnosis — nothing they could say would have reassured me at the time. Later, I was transferred to a rehab center.

At the rehab center they gave me some outdated information — I didn’t know at this time. This information was way too much for me to handle and caused my bipolar brain to become unstable. The item that struck me the most was the mention of a wheelchair for 80 percent of those diagnosed after ten years. I was 37 at the time and I had a lot of fear about being in a wheelchair by the time I was 50.

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