Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Staying Positive

Just because the positive side isn’t obvious doesn’t mean it isn’t there.  Odd as it may sound, I am actually happier now than before I became ill. 

What changed?  Me.  When I had good health, I did not appreciate it.  I was too busy focusing on what was wrong with my life.  When I got sick, I learned that I needed to change my attitude to survive.

I’ve been blessed with a loving husband, supportive family, and friends who haven’t run for the hills.  These are the positives I focus on. 

It is important to remember that significant others who leave because of illness weren’t going to support you through the tough times anyway, and even healthy people hit rough spots.  The same goes for friends—if they don’t believe you are ill, they weren’t good friends to begin with. 

Family is tougher…you don’t get to pick your family, but you may come to realize that good friends can create the family you never had.  At least living with these types of illnesses shows you which people really care about you.

I recently went through a rough patch that lasted a year and a half.  My husband lost his job two days after we bought our house, my doctor gave up on me, I was the sickest I had ever been, and I was afraid of losing my job because of it.   I managed to stay positive through all of that by not dwelling in it.

A lot of good came from that mess.  My husband started a new job that he is much happier at.  We managed to keep our house for the entire year and a half that he was unemployed by keeping the faith that we’d get through it. 

My doctor giving up on me pushed me to find the Hunter-Hopkins Center and battle my health insurance company to cover one of the doctors there.  I also discovered the center's Facebook page and found a wonderful group of supportive people who understand. 

I think my attitude change has made me a less dreary person and opened up a lot of opportunities for me.

Other positives that have come from this illness are realizing what the most important things in life are and appreciating what I do have and can do.  There are also some pretty amazing people and good friends I wouldn't have met if I wasn’t ill.

It is all a matter of how you look at things.  Positives are hiding in almost any negative situation.  You just need to figure out where to look.

What do you do to stay positive?


  1. So well said, and so very true! Positive thinking won't make us well, but it sure does shine some light in the darkness. Your blog is great - thanks so much for continuing to write! :)

  2. I stay positive by giving a hearing to all my feelings. I've found that loving my whole self, witnessing all that is my experience, allows me to just let feelings come and go. Sometimes there might be feelings that are difficult to bear that come for a while, but mostly being a good friend to myself tends to free me up to experience joy in the moment.

    I always love to hear about people who have had people they care for stick by their side, as it gives me hope.

    Love you! Claire