Stress and Struggles

Life is so stressful! When you talk to a doctoral student, you can tell right away that they are passionate. They are putting all their energy into a grade, papers, projects, class projects etc. And the smallest things can bust a doctoral student’s confidence…when you do so well and then all of a sudden you have a bad (for us it would be a B) grade. That confidence is shattered, the confidence that you are doing well goes down the toilet. What is worse is that this time of the semester, that is what pushes you.  The grades over the semester have built confidence but sometimes you see the trees versus the forest.  The focus is on the one grade versus the impact of that one grade, for example what if that one bad grade is worth at most 1% of your final grade…versus like 30%. I would MUCH rather get at B on something worth 1% of a final grade versus 20%. Nevertheless, when that confidence is shattered..it stings, it hurts, it breaks your heart. If it was me….I would be crying and eating buckets of ice cream. The truth of the matter is….it may not have been me today but it will be me one day. In fact, probably more than one day..it will be become part of my journey.

That is the same mindset that we have to have in life. I live daily with pain…my legs today have felt broken. My ankles, knees and hips have felt like someone took a jackhammer and hit them multiple times. The exhaustion of my brain today have felt like I was going in slow motion. My hands, wrists, shoulders and fingers have struggled not only to open things, to feed myself but also to just find a comfortable resting spot. For people who have RA, they suffer…we suffer. Add in Fibromyalgia and we live in daily torture. And for MANY people the side effects of our medication make life (living) even harder.

For  days like today it is hard to see the trees, it is hard to go..well it is JUST today….because we know that tomorrow we will hurt too! BUT what can we do to live life with our RA, Fibro and many other invisible diseases??? We take one day at a time, focus on the forest and take on small painful step at  a time.

Realize what are your priorities, realize what you can likely do in a day and then the rest of the day thank God for it. Thank God for people who cross your path..smile at someone who does not even know you. Or pay it forward, do something out of the ordinary for you. Why? Because you are living for the forest, not the trees. You are living to impact the world…not just the small circle that surrounds you.

Try it and let me know how it goes, I know that personally I am working every day to look at the forest. Is it hard??? YES VERY! It is VERY VERY VERY hard to not think of yourself, your pain, your torture and all your other worries. BUT for me I know that there is someone else who has my worries in his hands (my GOD) and that I do not have to spend every day worrying about. Instead I will spend my day touching someone’s life! I want to leave a legacy hat says…”she cared for me,” “She smiled at me and talked to me and changed my life.”

Be the change you want to see in someone else!

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