Courage- the ability to face difficulty, pain, or grief even though one feels fear.
Courage is an important virtue for one living with chronic illness. As I have stated previously, I have lived in denial and fear for most of my life. Fear can hold one back from making decisions which can create a better life. Fear also causes rumination of things that occurred in the past and of what the future holds. This causes one to neglect the present. Instead of living in the moment, life slips away. For those with chronic illness this can trigger a lack of joy for life due to missed experiences. Always concentrating on negative, what has happened due to illness and what could happen, creates a cloud of constant suffering that covers up any moments of happiness. This past year has taught me to face my fears. I have accepted the losses and applaud the obstacles I have overcome. I no longer dwell in the past or distress over the future. I can now live in the present and look forward to the future with courage.
To remind myself of what I have overcome, I have purchased a “Bracelet of Courage”. This idea came from a program for children with cancer called “Beads of Courage”, www.beadsofcourage.org. The idea is the child adds a bead to a necklace for each procedure, treatment, milestone, etc. A different color is represented for each instance. I created a bracelet using inexpensive Pandora-style beads to represent my life’s journey. See my tab, “Bracelet of Courage” for more detail.
“She is clothed with strength and dignity and laughs without fear of the future”. Proverbs 31: 25
Until next time,