Charlene's Story

In addition to fibromyalgia, I have degenerative disk disease, 2 herniated disks, lost a kidney to cancer last November and just found out 3 weeks ago that I now have lymphoma. I used to look at older folks and say "I'll never live that way, all stooped over or constantly complaining about pain". Well, I am... or rather, I was. I used to feel sorry for myself with all these health problems and pain every single day, but no longer. I realized that "I" am the only one responsible for my happiness and if I am going to be happy, I can't "allow" my bad days to affect how I look at my life. I have accomplished a lot! I want to accomplish more! I know I will never again be pain free, but I CAN change my psychological outlook. I don't want to be one of those people who does nothing but complain and use their disease as an excuse not to live life, so each morning I get up (slowly) walk to the mirror and make myself smile.. no matter how I feel.

I close my eyes and think of my most happy moments, then keep those in my head while I maneuver the stairs. By doing this daily, I don't think about the pain that the stairs cause or wonder "how bad" my day will be. I focus on things I "can" do that make me, and others around me, happy! Like baking things for my family and neighbors. I may not be able to control my fate, but I AM the MASTER of my Destiny!


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