Defying the Urge To Quit

I realized that it has been several months since I have written. The past several months have flown by in a heartbeat because there where many trying times with different situations that occurred both in my personal and family life. I was trying to juggle so many things at once that things just felt out of balance for me. Trying to aide my health holistically while at the back of my mind I knew that I would have to do an infusion of Ocrevus, working on finishing the school year with my daughter (since we home school her), trying to be there for my family as we deal with a difficult situation, and experiencing the first time loss of our beloved Shih Tzu. So much was going on, that at the back of my mind I felt the urge to quit doing the things I love. This is what happens when you are feeling overwhelmed and it took me several months to realize this. I tell you all of this because I want to be honest and real with you and want to let you know that when you are feeling this way you have to defy the urge to quit at all costs. As difficult as your current situation may be, continue to persevere and push on. You must and you will!

In my most difficult of times,  I find solace in God. That quiet time between him and I in the mornings and evenings have been crucial in providing me with strength; mentally, physically and spiritually that I thought I would never have. Despite all of this you would never know how much I have overcome as a woman, wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, friend etc.

Below I am sharing pictures of the past several months. In looking at them you would never know that I am actually legally blind, couldn’t walk at one point, and also have a daughter with an autoimmune condition. I share this  with you because I do not want you to think that things are perfect when looking at someone else pictures. Quite the contrary, we have so much going daily that most of the time I have to take a deep breath to continue on. But I do tell you this and share this so that you do not quit and do not limit yourself in anyway. “Remember, that the only limitations are the ones we set up in our own minds.” – Napolean Hill

Danilo & Veronica MS Walk

 

MRI’s & Sleepover

This past weekend was very busy for our family. I was scheduled for MRI’s of the Brain, Spine, & Thoracic Spine. The most difficult thing to do is sitting still while having these studies done being that a slight movement can cause the images to be re-done. After so many years of doing this, I ask to listen to classical music through the headsets and meditate and pray. Pray that I will be able to stay still while these images are being taken, pray that there will be no new lesions in any areas, and pray that I make it home on time so that my daughters friends can come over for their first overnight sleepover. I’m grateful to my daughter’s friends and their friendship and thankful to their parents for entrusting my husband and I with their children. I share this with you because I want you to know that as busy and hectic as it may get with numerous doctor appointments, life still must go on. It may not be easy, but believe me we can get it done. On Sunday morning, after the kids had breakfast, I had to rush them to get dressed so that we could hurry to the hospital with my husband to get labs drawn for some tests that have to go out to the Mayo Clinic. It wasn’t easy as my veins aren’t in the best of shape but we made it happen.

Below I am going to share pictures of this past weekend. The first picture is of the MRI suite. Looking at the white orchid to your left hand side, you would never know I would be walking down the hallway aisle shortly afterwards for MRI’s. The second picture is of my daughter and her friends. Would like you to see that we can make it all happen. Do not give up for one moment or feel like you can longer do it. Because you can and you will.

MRI Center

Sleep Over

“Be not afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living, and your belief will help create the fact.” – William James

“When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say, I used everything you gave me.” – Erma Bombeck

“Whoever loves much, performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Persevere

Persevere – to persist in anything undertaken; maintain a purpose in spite of difficulty, obstacles, or discouragement; continue steadfastly.

This word came into my thoughts today so I decided to look up it’s meaning. If you can, print out this word and place in an area that you can see/view everyday and I would like you to look at this word and it’s meaning in a new way. Persevere despite obstacles that may be in your way or seem to arise on a constant basis.  It can be very difficult to do, but you must push through despite the circumstances. Believe me when I tell you that my family and I have encountered times when we felt we couldn’t push forward another day and we have and must continue to do so. I still struggle on many occasions but have decided to make it a choice to give it my all in this life time. If you get the chance, listen to this video from Steve Harvey as it will bless you in so many ways and in different areas.

Steve Harvey – You Have Not Because You Ask Not

Nail Polish

I would have never have imagined that a couple of bottles of nail polish that were gifted to me could bring such joy into the life of my daughter and I. The simplicity of polish on a nail and the complexity of keeping your hand from moving as you see the smile on your daughters face. The priceless smile of happiness on her face as she watches her mom paint her nails. Such fulfillment for me as a mom to share this time with her. There were many seconds, minutes, and hours that were lost in the past as my body fought to recover from the demyelination that was occurring in my body. But alas, I place this aside to let you know that regardless of the condition that you may be in physically, take the time to draw a picture, listen to a song, tell a joke etc. Whatever you can do, even a simple smile will mean more to them than words can express.

Nails (with quote)

New Year/New Blessings

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I find joy in everyday, not because life is always good, but because God is.  –  Rick Warren

 

Happy New Year to everyone! We are two weeks into the New Year and I am so excited for fresh beginnings. Last year, was a very challenging year for me in which I questioned so many choices I had IMG_2559made with my health and if they were the correct ones. Looking back, all I had to do was let go and let God. It was a lot easier said than done for me, but as time passes by and I continue growing as a person and in my relationship with God this truth could not ring more loud and clear. There will always be circumstances that arise in life, some more difficult than others and beyond our control, but we must persevere through it all.  I am not oblivious to the difficulties that many people go through especially when dealing with a chronic disease in any way or form. But believe me, do not give up, regardless of what is going on. Continue to follows your dreams for they will lead you to great paths that will not only be a blessing to you but to many others.

My wish for you in 2018 is to fall in love with life again. Look for the beauty in the smallest of things and I guarantee you that you will see them. I know that each and everyone one of you can leave such footprints in this lifetime that will forever impact the life of yourself and many others.

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Target & A Fish Hook

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The past couple of months, I had been having a very difficult time with a couple of choices with my health in which I felt restricted with. They were making me feel a bit blue because there isn’t a worse feeling than having limited options. On this particular day I was out with a friend buying a couple of things at Target and not feeling the best because my foot was still numb from a flare up I had a couple of months ago. It felt very uncomfortable to be on my feet and I became a bit frustrated. As I stood in the checkout line to pay I noticed a young man in line behind us with a fish hook. Since he only had one item to pay for we let him know that he could go ahead of us.  During this time I also noticed that he was missing part of his hand and fingers and my curiosity got the best of me so I struck up a conversation with him. He was glad to share that the fishhook he was purchasing was for himself. He could not wait to try it and began asking the cashier a bunch of questions about the fish hook. His enthusiasm and vigor completely captivated me and I felt embarrassed at myself for having a pity party over my foot. Yes, it was extremely uncomfortable, but I still had my foot and regardless of how uncomfortable it felt I was still walking. At least I had the use of both of my hands and fingers even when at times they failed me, they were still there. At times, being uncomfortable is what we need to realize how fortunate we all are. Yes, there will be times (or many) when life can get difficult and you become frustrated with your current situation, but please know that at times we can forget how fortunate we all are. I was clearly reminded of this and I am thankful and grateful for a couple of aches and pains that remind me that I am still here and giving it my all. So let’s take a minute to just be grateful in this present moment.

A good friend of mine shared the above picture with me. The simplicity and beauty of it all just left me in awe. Enjoy!

Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the beautiful women who have been blessed with a child/children. One of my greatest joys and accomplishments in my lifetime has been to be a mother to my beautiful daughter. When my daughter was first born things in our household were difficult as I adjusted to having visual loss of one of my eyes and caring for a new baby. At that time the world around me looked very hazy as I pondered what my daughter’s life would be like with a mom that had MS. I will not lie and say that all was easy, but I will say that my daughter’s life brought so much joy into ours. So much uncertainty and doubt were quickly erased from my mind.

Today I am a better person because of her, and she is a genuine and compassionate child because of what her mom went through. So on this Mother’s Day please give yourself a pat on the back and know that you have done a great job regardless of the circumstances.

Proverbs 31: 25-26

25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
    she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
    and faithful instruction is on her tongue.

 

 

Still Limitless

1BE6FC18-76EF-4F4B-BAFC-F6C9E456E828  F702E33E-BDBA-466D-A826-1CD6E917DEA2The past couple of months seemed to have flown by for me. 2016 came to an end and 2017 quickly approached. The new year entered with much promise. My husband had surprised me with an Anniversary trip. I had lost my grandmother several years ago in January on our anniversary, so it has been very difficult to celebrate an anniversary during the years. My grandmother had been very dear and influential in my life growing up, so January has always felt bittersweet for me. I had also been under a tremendous amount of stress during the month of January and was having a difficult time juggling several things at once. During this time I had noticed that my body was not feeling quite right and I completely disregarded symptoms, odd symptoms that were arising. I attributed this all to stress and lack of sleep. By the end of February, I was having a very difficult time walking and still ignored some major red flags. Shortly after this, I had developed severe vertigo, nausea, and vomiting. At this point, my husband was very concerned and took me to the ER where I was admitted and administered IV steroids.  EB2FBC28-F5E1-4664-8DBB-DAB35957FA74After doing MRI’s while at the hospital, the reports read that I had new and enhancing lesions in the brain and spine. To be quite honest, I was very surprised and upset at myself for pushing my body to the verge of a flair up. During my hospital stay I was able to reflect on a lot of things.

As difficult as all of this was (IV steroids, PT/OT, still recovering), I am grateful to God for the many people who provided the care that aided in my recovery. The many prayers, communion in my hospital bed, visits from friends, nurses, a cream given to me from one of the nurse aides and her wonderful words of wisdom all aided me back to health.

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If you have MS or any chronic disease, please know that stress can very quickly deteriorate your body. There are certain stress factors that are beyond our control, but there are also many changes that we can make to help with this. Make it a morning routine to pray and meditate in the mornings. There is so much craziness already going on in the world so we need to fill ourselves with scriptures and positiveness before beginning our day.  I will share with you my morning routine. I love listening to Marianne Williamson, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBHvyEHylQc when I first wake up in the morning. Her words of wisdom are so encouraging. My husband and I also pray in the mornings before he heads off to work. Please note that you do not need to be married or have a significant other to do this. You can do this on your own as well. There is something special that happens when you first awake in the morning and do this. No words can explain it, but try it yourself.

If you are going through a flare up or a difficult time with your health right now, please know that it will get better. I know first hand that it may not feel like it when there have been more difficulties in your life than happier moments. I’ve been there… When  life gets so difficult you feel as if you cannot not place another foot forward. But, you must and you will!

One of my favorite quotes from Marianne Williamson:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

End of Year

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With a new year quickly approaching, take the time to reflect back on the past year. Gift yourself a journal just for you and find a quiet place and write down the thoughts that come to mind. Write down the things that brought smiles to your face this year. Also, jot down things that you wish you would have done differently but please do not beat yourself up over them. I know I have been guilty of this myself over the years. Please know that we all face difficult circumstances in our lives, but it is always up to us to determine how we will handle them. As 2016 is quickly coming to an end, my prayer for you is to live  your life to its fullest potential and do not let fear limit you in any way. You may be limited by circumstances beyond your control but I want you to know that where there is a will there is a way. My prayer for you in 2017 is to reach for the impossible that you thought would never be accomplished. Believe in your heart that you can do it. Above, I am sharing pictures of 2016 to show and encourage that you can do this. Please note that this past year was very challenging for me but you would never know it, nor did I let circumstances deter me in any way.

Let 2017 be the year of those impossibles!

Much Love,

Veronica

Home Repairs and A New Friend

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One of the first things that quickly crept up on my husband and I were numerous home repairs that needed attention since over the years our time had been consumed with hospitilizations, doctor visits, and caring for a small child. With the winter rapidly approaching, we realized that we were in need of a new furnace as the old one was no longer efficient and barely functional. My husband was placed in contact with a heating contractor by the name of Madison. I don’t even remember how the conversation came up but we were quickly talking about MS and how his mother had been affected by it. Madison, is now a grown adult but he ended up losing his mother at a very young age to this disease. After we were finished speaking I couldn’t help but wonder what his life had been like in the absence of his mother at such a young age.

In the days that followed,  I would see him here and there and his genuine humbleness, politeness, and desire to do a great job left me in awe. It made me think of my own child and how fortunate I have been to be able to be a parent for almost ten years now. I do not know how things were for Madison growing up but I do know that if his mom could see him now, she would definitly be proud. He has turned out to be a great person and man of God.

Today I’m grateful that I am doing well health wise and that I am able to be there for my daughter in such a vital time in her life. We may never have the answers as to why these things happen but I want to say that I can’t thank God enough for my life. In my most difficult of times he has always been there for me. Even when I thought I couldn’t step another foot forward, I did.

After my conversation with Madison that day he said God Bless and boy have those words rung loud and clear… God Bless You All