I really hope that by now, if my blog has done nothing else for you, it has shown that it is possible to find the positives in the negatives, the rose in the thorns, the rainbow in the rain and the giggles in the fits. Even if sometimes you have to look a little harder than others.
The last 15 days have been like playing a game of hide and seek, where positivity is the hider- a needle, and I am the seeker, and we are in a hay stack, and it’s night time.
Let me give you a very brief overview: went to work, had a seizure, went to hospital, staid in hospital, had more seizures, cried, got angry, wondered what I’d done to deserve such bad luck, cried, fell over twice, didn’t sleep, got poked and prodded endlessly, cried, mourned the loss of the visit I was supposed to be making to my much missed family abroad, ate some pretty terrible food and got constipated! Doesn’t sound very positive right?!
I thought about all of the posts I’d written and all of the things I’d already endured and how ironic it was that here I was, struggling to come up with any positives at all- perhaps there were no more giggles left. I can’t find any positives in this whole sorry mess. But I thought about the aforementioned Dorothy, and I took some advice from another wise lady that I’m very lucky to know- my 7-year old niece Ruby, who believes that having a positive attitude is asking HOW things can be done rather than saying they can’t be done! Very wise words Ruby!
Then one day, I went to get dressed. I looked in my bag of clothes (I say ‘my’, I actually mean an array of outfits donated to me by my very amazing friends- Zoe and Kate, and Vicki who took them away and washed them), and realised I had no clean pants left, I was feeling worse than ever. That rainbow was nowhere to be seen and never mind half empty, the glass had nothing in it! I asked the Nurse if the NHS provided pants to poor, hapless individuals like myself and she ran off to get me some. She returned a little while later with a tiny piece of netting- what am I supposed to do with this? It looked like something you’d keep your satsumas in, not something that sits comfortably between your legs protecting your delicate bits! I went to the bathroom to get dressed and as I attempted to pull this tiny piece of netting up, I couldn’t help but laugh my head off!! I can’t explain why it was this specifically that shifted my mindset- maybe it was my sincere gratitude that net knickers are better than no knickers, or maybe it was the realisation that when you’re stood in a hospital shower room trying to squeeze into a piece of netting- there is only one way to go, and it’s not down! Either way, I decided at that moment that I had done enough wallowing, it was time to start focusing on the positives in this experience, and here’s what I came up with:
1. How lucky I was to be able to access healthcare. This is a luxury that we take for granted that isn’t available to everyone. For that I will always be grateful.
2. I have amazing family and friends. It’s easy to take family and friends for granted, but each time, I learn not to. I am completely in awe of each person I know- whether or not I see you in person much, I never stop being reminded of how fantastic you all are. A nurse said to me, “aww, you don’t have any cards or anything”, and I thought to myself, “No, but I have family and friends who have saved my life more than once, keep me safe, drive around for me, make me laugh and keep me company with visits, phone calls, messages and gifts, speak up for me when I cant speak for myself, worry about me, spoil me, wash my clothes, give up time with their family for me, offer to cook for me, make sure I have food and drink, make me laugh, keep me in their thoughts and remind me over and over again that I don’t need to worry. So I don’t really need cards or anything” (not that it hasn’t been lovely and I’m very grateful for the lovely cards I’ve had)!
4. Each hospital stay is an opportunity to learn something new….this time I learnt you can order takeaway directly to your bed. This means however terrible any future hospital stay may be, it will always be that little bit better knowing I am only ever 30 minutes away from a Big Mac.
5. When someone who 7 days ago was a complete stranger gives you a hug as you leave and tells you, “I couldn’t have got through this without you” with reference to their M.S. diagnosis, it feels pretty damn special. I met a wonderful lady and within 7 days, we’d talked poo, sexy Doctors, life changing events and believe it or not- some normal conversation too! She is now going to be a friend for life!
I’m going to keep this post short and sweet because I have alot of sleep to catch up on and following a torturous 30 hour sleep deprivation test (part and parcel of investigating epilepsy apparently), I’m nakard and probably not making much sense….
In summary: you can be sad, angry, upset, overwhelmed, anxious, drained, unsure, afraid or tired and STILL be positive. Also, hurrah for net knickers!!!
“You may not control all the things that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them” – Maya Angelou
Lots of Love