Monday, July 2, 2012

"It's not about Understanding... it's about not giving up." - Chris Neilsen, What Dreams May Come

"When I was young, I met this beautiful girl by a lake..." - Chris Neilsen

That's how one of my all time favorite movies starts.

And this morning, I'm discovering a new favorite to add to the list. I'm watching Gifted Hands: the Ben Carson Story ( click here for more info), and I'm reminded of the value of stuborness in this life. It's something most kids learn at a very young age (much to the chagrin of parents everywhere).

This movie reminded me that there is a hopefulness inherent on well placed stubborness.  I have to wonder if those people who stubbornly refuse to give up know how valuable their hope is. 

While there are lots of fun, check-your-brain-at-the-door films out there (and there is nothing wrong with them), I always appreciate those stories that bring inspiration. Who knows? Maybe the story of me found here on this blog will inspire someone.

Stories of doctors who refuse to give up on patients make me wonder, "Where are the Ben Carsons of this day and age?"

They are out there. I'd encourage anyone, dear readers, don't stop looking for that trait until you find it.

My brother told me that he had never seen my dad's spirits as low as when he was told he was given the list of side effects of Chemo. After all, he'd just had one doctor say, "Make it a good 6-11 months."  So what good would Chemo do, right? But he looked into it anyway, opting not to give up, and now we're seeing a measure of success that's encouraging. And Dad's spirits? Well, aside from being bored to death when he goes in for the 8 hours of infusions every 2 weeks, they are pretty high.

  Which reminds me of another friend who has a special needs child suffering from symptoms ranging from hearing difficulties, to epileptic-like seizure attacks. Each diagnosis is more dire than the next. Thinking of myself in her shoes, each day must just flow into the next, as challenging (if not more) than the day before. It must all must seem overwhelming. But she's powering on through it - running marathons (literally) and taking care of herself, because giving up is not in her nature. It's what love does.

This weekend, I actually heard what I'd needed to hear for a while myself. After my doctor in Washington basically left me with "Good Luck" after seeing all my work ups, I went to see my old OBGYN in CA on my visit down there. He gave me a bit more information and a healthy dose of positive focus. While my ability to carry a pregnancy to term is still edged with a haze of doubt, he helped me create a plan that everyone is satisfied with. It doesn't involve fertility drugs (as I'm already in pain nearly daily, he doesn't see the point in making me even more sick) and it does have a back-up plan in case the pain or swelling gets out of control. So everyone knows the score at the moment and we'll see what happens. This weekend, while discussing a friend's impending divorce, it brought up a great conversation about our "deal breakers".  I have some and he has some, and they are pretty much the same things, so we both know the rules we play by. My Sailor said that us not being able to have bio kids is NOT a deal breaker, and that felt amazing to actually hear. Though deep down, I hoped that would be the case. It's an irrational fear that is totally normal for any woman who has wrestled with infertility.  I've always been very forthright with the men in my life about my conditions. After all, it's only fair to ALL involved. Luckily, I've known in advance. It weeds out those who must have a biological family from those who can see family the way I do - bonds of love (where blood is just blood). After all, I don't want to rob anyone of their dream family if I know I may not be capable of empowering that dream. My Sailor knew about my health conditions before all of this, but knowing something and living with something are 2 very different things, and I will admit, it had me just a bit worried. You know, the kind of irrational, brews-in-the-back-of-your-mind-quietly sort of worried.  Hearing him say, unsolicited, that he wouldn't give up on us helped slay that little demon. I didn't even realize I needed to hear it, but his determination not to give up on us boosted me up yesterday.

"It's not about understanding... it's about not giving up." - What Dreams May Come.

It's amazing what is possible in life when quitting simply isn't an option.

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