CBC Wire Tap‘s bittersweet video compilation of life’s lessons stirred me to pose this question to all of you: What would you say to yourself at different points of your lupus journey? At diagnosis? After one year? On your last hospital visit?
As most of you know, my most powerful lupus lessons were learned almost exactly six years ago, during my last major flare. This month, my lupus cerebritis anniversary passed unnoticed until a friend mentioned it days after the fact. The shock of not remembering was quickly replaced with elation. Memory has had too much power over me the last few years. To feel its grip loosening in this way is what I’ve been waiting and hoping for.
Thanks, brain! This is the best anniversary gift you’ve ever given me!
That being said, I don’t think I should let six hospitalization-free years pass by without some kind of recognition! The video inspired me to come up with my “How to Age Gracefully with Lupus” words of wisdom for the Elena of six years ago. The perfect way to mark this milestone!
Dear 28 year old,
Don’t panic. Take it minute by minute if you have to. No matter how dark and full of pain your life feels, seek out gratitude – it will anchor you, it will keep you fighting. When in doubt, NAP. Saying no will give you more yeses. Seriously, you need to trust me on this one. And most importantly, there are people out there who do understand. FIND THEM.
Love, 34 year old.
One more message, before I go:
Dear YOU (yes, you!),
So glad we found each other.
p.s. Leave me a comment with your words of wisdom to your past selves – I’d love to hear them!