with a positive attitude. Shoulders squared, chin lifted slightly, smile on my face, and oozing one LOUD and focused mantra
I do this most mornings and have for 32 years. I need my morning pep talks, prayers and inner warrior rehearsal. In 1988, it was done to face the battle and acknowledge I was going Deaf. In 1994, I drank my super hero juice to face being fitted for my first hearing aid. In 1995, it was to gear up to go to the neurologist the day I was told I have Meniere’s disease. In 2005, it was the morning of my cochlear implant surgery, and in 2010 to spend the day in vestibular therapy to learn how to “fall safely” (after concussion #4).
It is August of 2021 and I still wake up each morning and square my shoulders, lift my chin, grin and ooze a “BRING IT” attitude. However, is is 10 AM and I have already cried twice as I struggle to assist and support my mom who was diagnosed with a terminal illness last week. Normally I still have spoons by 8 or 9 PM. (See “The Spoon Theory“). This week I’m spoon-less around 11 AM.
So I woke up this morning…
and reminded myself that sometimes you have to square off, lift your chin, and dig deep even if it is the middle of the day. At 11 AM I haven’t had a renewal of energy after a night’s rest. My spoons haven’t magically reappeared. Instead, of oozing “BRING IT” I’m hoping I can MAKE IT.
Like many of you, those who are going through things that seem
Too challenging for any “normal” human being,
just remember that we are resilient creatures. It may be 11 AM and I’m “spoon-less”, but I have siblings who are in this battle to support and fight for mom too. I have children who love me and text me during the day to remind me to take care of myself. I have a peer network at work with people messaging me or texting me several times a week to just remind me that I am thought of and valued. I have my faith to remind me that life is more than the 24 hours I breathe in and breathe out each day.
So I woke up this morning…
and I am not afraid that this day is already hard. For you see? I’ve had a day implode before and I survived. You can too. For all those who face seemingly insurmountable obstacles, please remember one thing. I may be sitting 5 feet from you like with my precious mother (currently seated at my 10 o’clock with her Shih Tzu, Toby), or 324 miles from the student who emailed me this morning and included a picture she took last night with her older sister in hospice counting down the final hours of kicking Multiple Sclerosis’ ass, (her words), and 3 time zones from my friend in Greece who is battling cancer AGAIN, but we are in this thing called LIFE together.
It isn’t always easy. It isn’t always pretty. It is, however, WORTH IT.
I’m grown-up enough in mind and body to know that today I started my day the same and petered out early. But you see? I know that I will go to bed tonight and sleep well (or poorly), doing so and knowing that my Apple Watch alarm and Golden Retriever, Finn, will wake me at 6 AM. My eyes will pop open and my feet will hit the floor. My first thought will be,
so I woke up this morning…
L. Denise Portis, Ph.D.
©2021 Personal Hearing Loss Journal