Thursday, April 5, 2012

Knowing Who You Are

"It's a continuing journey that is there 
when you close your eyes
 and when you open your eyes, 
but it doesn't have to be who YOU ARE".  

A very close friend of mine who has suffered two bouts with breast cancer shared this thought with me and I wanted to pass it on to my readers. She is doing very well now and has been a great source of support to me.  When she sent me this, it struck a nerve because I sometimes feel like I let multiple myeloma dominate me.

A diagnosis of multiple myeloma is never far from my thoughts and I do think about it when I close my eyes at night and when I awake in the morning.  I recognize that it will probably be the story of my life forever, but it doesn't have to be who I am.  Now, if I could only practice what I preach.  My last post, Sometimes Sadness Prevails, certainly did not reflect that!

As much as I find writing this blog to be cathartic, I often wonder if it causes me to focus too intently on multiple myeloma and allow it to take up residence in my mind. Before I began researching MM on the internet and reading blogs and writing my own, I was pretty good at putting it somewhere in the hinterlands of my brain.  I suppose, at times, I was not facing reality and burying my head in the sand. I must admit there have been times when that has felt like a pretty good strategy!

Burying my head in the sand is probably not the best option for dealing with the emotional toll of this disease or any other difficulty in my life.  I think the best option is to focus on who I have been throughout my life and who I still am.  Yes, I am many things, one of which is a cancer patient.  I am also a mother, wife and daughter and a retired first grade teacher.  I adore my cats and I love art and music. Mozart makes my heart sing! I love to travel and to read and cook and bake and I love to decorate. . .I could go on and on.  My point is I am so much more than a multiple myeloma patient.  Multiple Myeloma is NOT who I am.

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