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Woman opening a birthday present

Birthday Capsule

I celebrate a big birthday this year and rather than shed light on the number, let’s talk about the milestone in general. I believe many readers can attest to the importance of seeing through yet another birthday. Whether you’ve just been diagnosed with blood cancer or have walked this walk for a few years, we can probably agree that any birthday is a blessing.

When I first did my research on multiple myeloma, you couldn’t tell me that in 5 years my life as I knew it would be over. Well, some of that statement is accurate since life has never been the same. However, I’m still kicking 10 years in. I could never guess those odds. I get emotional thinking about how hearing the word cancer often stops you from thinking about anything other than mortality being right around the corner.

Putting the P in positive attitude

I’ve been able to share my story in various outlets, and it always comes back to trying to have a positive mindset. It’s important to try and take back some of the control you once had. The days when treatment kicks in and your body reacts in its own way… well, that’s a personal walk. The days that are not so bright are not every day. On the days when you’re able to move about as your old self, well, that is a good day!

I’ve said this before and I guess I’ll say it again, if you were miserable prior to a diagnosis, you now have a choice to think of life differently. If you continue bad habits, well, I guess you won’t be up for the positive talk. There is just something about how we look at the worst of times and how we handle those situations. For me, the “P” in positive means possible, permissive, and persistent.

My birthday goals this year

With a guest list of friends and family counting over 100, I’m actually looking forward to showing up at my party! Again, I reached a milestone. I lost a lot to get here and even gained some. I took the walk of being positive, to live in the moment, fully knowing tomorrow is not promised. My mantra is to live life until the wheels fall off. It is not an understatement in the very least. As I drive through life with my hair flowing, I laugh, smile, and grasp all of what today is about. I look forward to celebrating my life now while I’m here, rather looking down and seeing everyone show up at my memorial. I’ll get to sashay across the room in this formal attire at my birthday affair and show another face of beating the odds and continuing to beat the odds.

After my birthday, then what?

When it’s all done, I’ll bathe in the moment of having a good time and then get back to business. So, what will your birthday capsule be? When you look back at your life and your milestones, what are you missing, or have you filled any voids? If you’re moving from your first cycle of treatment to your second, that is a milestone. If you mark that 1 year of treatment with the hope of just a few more years to hopefully get those numbers down, that’s a milestone. Have you gotten to remission now or a few times? Indeed, that is a milestone.

Happy Birthday!

The time to fight is now, with integrity, grace, hope, and a smile….when you feel like it

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Daniel Malito moderator
    3 weeks ago

    @yolandabrunson-sarrabo Dude! I love parties. I’m so glad I’m still here to go to them. Passing such a big milestone like 21 years old is important (read: you look young 😛 ). Seriously, whatever birthday it is, enjoy the poop out of it because it’s amazing that you are there and happy and able to par-tayyy down. You are a ray of sunshine like always Yolanda, don’t ever stop shining. Keep on keepin’ on, DPM

  • Yolanda Brunson-Sarrabo moderator author
    3 weeks ago

    Thank you Daniel! Yes, nothing wrong with a good party! I’ll take 21… thanks 🙂
    I’ll try and continue bringing the ray as long as I can. Cheers!

  • Ann Harper moderator
    3 weeks ago

    @yolandabrunson-sarrabo Celebrating milestones and trying to enjoy the here and now is so important. Tomorrow isn’t promised, but we’re here today. I’m struggling with that right now. I should work 4 more years but I just don’t want to. I would lose a lot of money if I retire early, but life is short and there’s no guarantees. For now I’m taking it a day at a time. As far as milestones go Crystal is almost 2 years out from the end of treatment and I’m 5 years. It’s all about the little (big) things! I hope you have a wonderful Birthday party.

  • Yolanda Brunson-Sarrabo moderator author
    3 weeks ago

    Thank you so much, Ann! Yes taking this step by step and realizing we’re all not promised… so live how you want to live! I wish you the best in your decision to continue work or not- that’s not an easy one to work around. Best to you!

  • VinnieCent moderator
    3 weeks ago

    I was really looking forward to meeting you at HU Connexion! I cant imagine any party being the same without you. I hope you had a most wonderful birthday @yolandabrunson-sarrabo. By the way, I LOVE the idea of a birthday capsule. Thanks for sharing that gift of an image with us 🙂

    With much gratitude,

    -Vinnie ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢

  • Yolanda Brunson-Sarrabo moderator author
    3 weeks ago

    Thank you @vinniecent ! I really wanted to meet everyone as well- maybe the next one! I have a few more days it’s on Saturday. Best!

  • Matt Goldman
    3 weeks ago

    Happy birthday Yolanda!

  • Yolanda Brunson-Sarrabo moderator author
    3 weeks ago

    Thank you Matt!

  • Ronni Gordon moderator
    4 weeks ago

    Happy birthday! That’s sure one big party. What are you going to wear?

  • Yolanda Brunson-Sarrabo moderator author
    3 weeks ago

    @ronnigordon Thank you!
    Yep, it will be a big one for sure. I have my Bagley Mischa gown ready for the occasion. (LOL)

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