Woman standing strong and tall with her hands on her hips weathering a storm

Strength...What's That?

Sometimes, I have to remind myself exactly what is strength and why is it so important for our care and getting through the battles faced by so many. One thing I now get is that this thing called life was never guaranteed to be roses and dandelions, not for a second. Whether it was me fighting to get a foot in the cutthroat fashion industry being one of few African Americans handling production management and product development related concepts, well let’s just say I’ve faced a lot professionally and made it on top. So it wasn’t a surprise to be handed yet another feat in myeloma... why not? This thing called strength is deep-rooted and bred in me. What happens when your health is tackled? How does one get back up when thrown multiple pebbles to begin with, and now this?

Honey, it isn’t easy but it’s a must to pull it from your gut!

"I can’t" isn't an option

We’re all different, but I must say if you aren’t going to do your due diligence, then don’t expect anyone else to do it for you. My mother would tell me, “Baby, you’re so strong. I wish I had that strength when I was your age.”  When diagnosed with multiple myeloma, I was thrown another bone and pebble and knew I wanted to live, as I had/have so much more to do. I may not get to do everything I have left or want to do, but by no means do I let this pest design my destiny. I’ve had to carry myeloma around for 10 years, 4 years in treatment and now in remission. What does that mean? It means I have things to do! I’ve lived with treatment…needles, leg spasms, lockjaw, sore stomach. Yet, I have done a lot of things that I wanted through the storm. It may have been rocky in the beginning, but the tears were wiped and I moved on. "I can’t do it" was not an option.

Finding a strong body and mind

If you don’t learn anything else from any of my posts, please capture this: I truly believe beating this and any blood cancer is about mind and body. You have to be mentally ready for this. The metamorphosis that our body goes through leads us through some really heavy revelations. It’s like heading for a super fast roller coaster ride without a seat harness. Will you fall off? Will you get your grip to pull yourself up? Can you hang on for dear life? Or do you just drop out of the corner of the seat? Don’t give up – pull yourself up and ride this out until the ride slows itself down.

Finding my inner superhero

I feel like a superhero weathering the storm of blood cancer. We are unique and we are some strong %#$ survivors. How do I know? I’ve lived it, living it and understand the struggle. I feel like a special superhero, you know the one that stops and takes out the bad cells. As we fight those pink and purple cells that are acting the fool, we cut through and take them out. Our kryptonite is a variety of medications, multiple levels in prognoses. The superhuman in us save the day, even when it gets doubtful in curbing the beast faced. Strength is capturing a little bit of mind Jedi tricks to keep at it in moving forward. Understand it takes all of you to get through these stages, not some of you... all of you. Not everyone is game to being a superhero, but wouldn’t it be nice if we all were. Take control of your story and pull out the strength that is warranted in you… like Prego, it’s in there!

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

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