Apr. 15, 2017

Being scared is okay. Just need to remember to be my strength.

Often, I have to remind myself that being scared is actually a good thing.  During normal times, I think back and remember that it’s smart.  For those of you that have followed from the beginning of my journey, you know that I’m almost constantly undergoing some kind of surgery, testing, and/or treatment.  Three and a half years of it.  It doesn’t seem like a long time, but when you do what I have had to do, it’s incredibly long.  Please don’t take this as some kind of plea for sympathy.  It’s not.  I’m hoping to share the lessons I’ve learned.  If what I share helps someone else, even if they don’t tell me directly, I’ll know that my purpose in all of this has been for good.  I’m going to keep being my strength.  An encouraging and loving friend recently told me, “be your own strength and nothing will ever let you down because you will not let you down.”  This woman is young and has wisdom beyond her years, let me tell you.

In about 13 hours, I’ll be undergoing necessary diagnostic testing.  I freely admit that I’m scared.  Not of the tests themselves, but of the results.  The reason why is because I have never been forced to undergo testing and have the results come out good.  I have two MRIs and more bloodwork.  My last MRI, in conjunction with an ultrasound, determined a problem with one of my kidneys, which led to having to add OC pills to my daily regimen in addition to biweekly infusions.  The one before that determined that I had pseudotumor cerebri and I had to have a LP and about six hours in ambulatory care before I lost my vision.  The concerns demanding these coming tests?  Possible infection and slipped disc.  Oh and the bloodwork?  Let’s just say that I know that I can expect to have to fill 12 vials.  My purpose with sharing all of this?  To show that being scared is okay.

I’ve learned that it’s smart to be scared.  It means that I haven’t become complacent or worse, arrogant.  I have a degree in healthcare.  I know how to research and use credible sources to glean the best and worst case scenarios.  I can read my medical record and test results without using Google.  The problem with that is, my optimistic side always wars with my realistic side.  I’ll tell my family and friends, “hey, I’m strong.  I can handle this, no problem.” (I can see some of you just shaking your head at me and others smirking.)  However, I am scared.  I wonder how much more I can take.  How much more stress will I inadvertently put on those that love and care for me?  I’ve learned that the more I try to joke it away or shrug it off, the more transparent I am to a few people.  I’m in so much more pain than I ever have been before.  The cause right now is just a theory.  My treatment?  The game of trial and error with medication.  Nothing new to me since the diagnosis of my immune disease three and a half years ago.  What’s scarier is that there is only one other person that has my immune disease and this new one, at least that’s been recorded.  The treatment that person underwent may not work for me.  The treatment plan for me has no recorded information for someone with my current health issues and history.  My doctors and I have researched and researched and…nothing.  So, I’m scared.  What will these new tests uncover?  How much harder will my life be?  But I won’t shatter from the fear.  I refuse.

So, I’m going to keep following my friend’s advice.  I’m being my own strength because I refuse to let myself down.  But did you know that it’s also a sign of strength to be scared and respect it?  It really is.  I’m not saying it to make myself look strong.  I’m saying it because it’s true.  And following another wise, loving, and encouraging friend’s advice, I’m going to take care of me.  I’m going to take care of me because I have people who depend on me to be in their lives.  I’m going to take care of me because I depend on myself to be here.

If you’re reading this and are willing to do something for me, I could use prayers, vibes, wishes, virtual hugs, basically anything good.  If you can send anything good my way, I will be incredibly grateful.  If I can do the same for you, hit me up.


Until later beautifuls…be safe and be kind to one another.