Tuesday, July 16, 2019

~BLOG UPDATE~

Hi All,

I’m excited to announce that due to the success of this blog that I have now transitioned over to a new blogging platform that I think you will really enjoy!  You will find your favorite articles there and many more recent ones!

Please join me at RealisticOptimism.org – I can’t wait to see you there!

From me to you,

Lisa

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

The Dreams of Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow…


~BLOG UPDATE~

Hi All,

I’m excited to announce that due to the success of this blog that I have now transitioned over to a new blogging platform that I think you will really enjoy!  You will find your favorite articles there and many more recent ones!

Please join me at RealisticOptimism.org – I can’t wait to see you there!

From me to you,

Lisa



I have a LOT of dreams. They fall into various categories but here’s how I often think of them because I feel like this is one of my better ways of grouping them together.

As we dive in, I’d love to hear what you think of these categories.  Do they provide a new perspective of all you achieved in your life and the dreams you still hold?  

I find that it can provide quite a success story when you really analyze your life within the scope of these categories – one filled with many successes, including some forgotten but quite important ones.

Here’s the three categories I find most helpful:

The dreams of yesterday:  I’m not going to dwell on this category too much because I’m very happy with the goals I accomplished pre-illness.  I was a bit of a wild child while also still graduating from law school with honors and summiting Mount Kilimanjaro.  There are still many of yesterday’s dreams that have not been fulfilled yet because my illness put a halt on them.  Stay tuned though... more to come on that. 

In short, while I haven’t achieved them all, I’m happy with what I have achieved.  I’m not sure I know anyone that can say they’ve achieved all their dreams.  If they can, wow, how lucky!  But I think many of us are in the boat of having some dreams achieved and many not yet achieved. 

The dreams of today:  These are the dreams that I am constantly working on.  Most of them are new dreams as many of my old dreams are not currently possible.  I have had to give up (at least for now – yes, that is my stubbornness coming out) many of my pre-diagnosis dreams.  I know many of us have had to do this.  Dreams near and dear to our hearts.  And that’s pretty hard – it’s like being kicked when you are down. 

However, the way I look at it, living with a chronic illness has made me grow in new ways and achieve things that were never even on my radar or that I dreamed were even possible.  I have a feeling the same is true for many of you too.  Sometimes it just takes really thinking about them.  Here’s a few of mine:

·       I never knew I would find a medical conference on an illness enlightening (or even understandable).  Seriously, I failed science in college. So, this is an unimaginable dream that has come to reality.  Kind of cool!

·       I learned that legal research skills translate well into medical research skills. Who knew?  (Thank you @google!)

·       I never thought I would be viewed as an insightful contributor on a panel to medical students, educating them about my illness but I was!

·       And I discovered that my coaching talents have helped me better identify with and support my friends that also have chronic illnesses.

·       While I knew I was a pretty decent writer, I never knew someday I would have my own blog!  Blogging has been a blast and a bit therapeutic!

·       And soon, me (remember, I failed science) will be presenting at a booth at a state medical conference to educate medical providers on my illness.  NEVER saw that coming.  But this has become a dream of mine now – sharing with as many providers as possible about my illness so more of us can find medical support.

We all have our lists – every day we are achieving dreams and goals that likely weren’t on our radar pre-illness.  Unexpected but welcomed growth!   I wish it didn’t have to come this way for us, but it has and I see us all doing wonderful things, being even more wonderful, amazing people because of it.  There really is something to take away from every bad (or really bad) things that we encounter in life.

These items on this list were definitely not on the dream horizon before I got sick but they are success stories that I now have.  So, while I have a chronic illness, I have no qualms saying that I also live a pretty happy life. 

The dreams of tomorrow:  I am admittedly very stubborn.  I am still hanging on to some of my original dreams.   Some I know I should let go, at least for now, but I’ve found justifications and rationalizations for hanging on to them.  Some I try to make possible still.  This has its up and down sides.  Sometimes it leads to me pushing too hard.  Sometimes it leads to disappointment.  But sometimes it also leads to small steps toward the dream or a smaller version of the dream.  And that part is pretty exciting.  I really need to get a reality grip on the first two parts though as those aren’t good for me.  And reality does hit… hard.  

Some of the dreams of tomorrow include things I aspire to do once I have more time.  These are pretty realistic.  They are focused on helping others, raising awareness of my illness and those of others.  I have a voice and I know I can use it to do a lot of good.  I just need the time and energy to do more of it.  I am determined to find it.

Some of the dreams of tomorrow include things I hope to do when I get better.  Yes, I say when, not if.  While there’s no science to tell me that I will get better there are options that I continue to try.  Some give me small gains, some bigger.  I’m not giving up on any of them.  Because the dreams of tomorrow mean a lot to me.  

For example, I’ve always wanted to walk part of the Appalachian trail, see the Grand Canyon, and hike Macchu Piccu.  None of these things are possible right now.  And while some may call me unrealistic, I choose to believe that if I keep advocating, raising awareness, and fighting for a cure, that better is to come for me in my life.  And if I need to get on the Appalachian trail on a scooter or trolley across Macchu Piccu, I will.  I’m okay right now with creating new versions of these dreams but I’m not ready to give up on them totally.  Maybe I never will be.  Maybe I’m setting myself up for disappointment.  Or, maybe, just maybe, the excitement at the thought of these dreams coming true is just what I need right now.   Because maybe some of them will come true! 

I would love to hear where everyone feels that they are at with their dreams of tomorrow.  Have you let them go and moved on?  Do you have new dreams?  Have you found a way to bring them to reality?  Do you get excited about the possibility of them?


~BLOG UPDATE~

Hi All, I’m excited to announce that due to the success of this blog that I have now transitioned over to a new blogging platform that I t...