Why I Stay

I have found people whom are invested - in each other and in the space we all share. They ask others what is needed, and search for ways to help get it. They selflessly offer a helping hand. They will fight injustices for people they don’t even know. They add immeasurable beauty to our surroundings. They don’t sit around and complain about what they wish were different. They sit together and discuss ways to create the home they want and believe we all deserve. THAT. That is the breath and the heartbeat of community, and community is what makes a place worth staying.

Birds of Change

I am learning to be more like the cardinal - to sing freely, loud and clear. I have a voice that is unique. I can use it to add something beautiful to the world. In relearning how to use my voice I am developing more respect for myself, and am growing beyond the fear the kept me small for many years. Now I have dignity. The cardinal in my tattoo is in a position of prominence, wings spread wide, soaring upward. It reminds me to follow suit. I will no longer make myself small. I will not hide. I will spread my wings as wide as they will go and use my voice to leave this world better than I found it.

MS Awareness Month Part 2: Coping

Those early days were filled with mourning for the things I would most assuredly lose. My imagination had me rendered immobile, speechless, and blind; a breathing statue in constant, invisible pain. I could find no meaning in a life like that. My loved ones would spend their precious time caring for me while I offered nothing in return; my children would sacrifice their own pursuits for my sake. I'd be nothing more than a burden.But in a moment of clarity several weeks later, I snapped out of it.

Road to Diagnosis

The last week of February was when I was hit by a proverbial truck. Both feet went numb first. Then both hands. Over the course of three days that loss of sensation crept up into my shins, quads, and my entire left arm. Some refer to it as Novocain Numb. It wasn’t painful, but it scared me. I found myself trying to shake it out, as a runner does before a race to loosen up and get the blood flowing. I clenched my hands into fists and stretched them out again, just to be sure I still could.