A Piece of Peace

The beauty of life is that it’s forever changing.

“Of course there is no formula for success except, perhaps, an unconditional acceptance of life and what it brings.” ~ Arthur Rubinstein

Did you know that acceptance is a choice that you have full reign over? Now they tell me! I do have some choice in this horrific disease.

But, there’s a catch.

I saw a tall case of stairs the other day, it nearly brought me to tears. Why? Well, mainly because today I’m downgraded to a wheelchair. While not too long ago I would have happily opted to take on those stairs, now I can’t. So, in the cloud of my sorrow, before I could even collect myself, my husband dared me to think about what I could do. All I wanted was to pay respect to the part of me that’s likely gone forever, but dwelling on those memories encourages my denial of the acceptance of what is now.

I have heard that acceptance is a roadway that can lead to enduring happiness. If that’s the case can someone please get me the Book of Acceptance 101? Because every time I think I’m there I get a nice slap in the face. They say that part of the beauty of life is that it’s forever changing.

Well, I should have one up on that because I’m living with an unpredictable incurable disease. I have no choice but to go with the flow. If I don’t I just create more turbulence for my own self. And who needs that? I know it’s tempting to lean towards anger and frustration. But we help ourselves so much more if we don’t.

“We need to develop the habit of looking at whatever happens through a positive mindset, instead of a negative and defeatist one.” ~ Ana S.

Now to be honest, I’m still working on that one. I mean I’m not a pessimist, but that’s a tall mountain to climb. I also must reluctantly admit that things and people have come into my life since my diagnosis that otherwise would not have – a host of supportive others battling this very same thing. People who understand; first hand. Not exactly a reason to elect to have MS, but it’s what happens when you slowly seek out the positive in a not so positive situation.

The fact is I can no longer climb that monstrous flight of stairs, but there are still things that I can do. If I can just hold on to that frame of mind, life becomes more bearable for both my husband and me. After I dried my eyes, passed those darn stairs, and remembered my abilities, I discovered to my own surprise … a piece of peace. Who knew?

I guess I should again grudgingly thank my husband.
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Original article appeared on –The National MS Society Blog

Author: Nicole Lemelle

My name is Nicole Lemelle. I am a writer, activist and a person living with Multiple Sclerosis. I created My New Normals to educate those who do not understand MS, reassure people with similar plights and inspire everyone to seize command of their lives.

11 thoughts on “A Piece of Peace”

  1. Wow, one thing you can do and do it extremely well is writing, you have a real talent in speaking truth and being real to your readers. There are many who extoll advice on acceptance, unfortunately in a rather unrealistic and glib way, not you, when you speak of acceptance we know the truth within that statement, it comes from a hard fought battle with your illness and we can trust you. You have helped each of us find acceptance in our own lives, where ever we may be on this journey.
    Acceptance is never giving up, it’s being real and moving forward.

    Thank you and your husband, you are a great team!

  2. Hi Nicole.. Thanks again for another honest and inspiring post. I agree that acceptance is hard. It sounds lovely in theory but its another matter putting into practice especially when circumstances are continually changing on the MS ‘rollercoaster’. I feel it is something to aspire and work towards and maybe comes in brief moments here and there… Anyway we will keep trying…xxx Christine

  3. Nicole,
    The mere sight of stairs makes me cringe as it illuminates obstacles but with the encouragement of our friends and families we can strive to be positive . I love your quotes and I guess acceptance is a big part of this stupid illness. Thanks for sharing your life . God Bless You

  4. Nicole….F*** the stairs! Who needs them anyway? We have moved on to bigger & better things. Why worry about what we can’t do? yes it would be nice to be able to get up & go, but the reality is we can’t, but there is so much we can still do. We can cry, laugh, love, talk & read. Whenever I start to feel sorry for myself, I remember that there is always someone, somewhere who is struggling more than I am. Don’t let this disese control you, control IT! You are still in charge!

  5. There are times when I must begrudgingly accept what has happened to me, but I see it more as giving in. That’s when I’m in my negative frame of mind. I try so hard to get rid of that dark side, though. Being positive certainly isn’t easy, but I find that I can handle things better when I let the sun in — even just a tad.

  6. Hi Nicole, like you, I am lucky to have a wonderful husband as well. I am reminded of that on a regular basis by family and friends. I tell them this – if the situation was reversed I would take great care of my husband! Acceptance, well I told my husband I will NEVER accept this MS. He thinks it would help me if I did. I see it as admitting defeat if I did. (this is my own personal feelings) I’m glad that you have been able too. Perhaps if I did, I might also find peace. I guess it’s different for all of us. Keep on keeping on as you are truly an inspiration to so many. Please keep those stairs in mind as you never know. Take care

  7. Nicole, in our separate ways, we were thinking of a similar topic in considering our blog posts. My blog poem scheduled for tomorrow also talks of the challenges but then makes the same conclusion you do: that there are still things one can do.

  8. Hi Nicole,
    Please let me know where to get a copy of Acceptance 101, although Acceptance For Dummies wouldbe better for me! Thanks for another good post and reminding me to be realistic, keeping it real helps me keep my expectations in check which in turn makes my acceptance of limitations a little more palatable…sometimes! Have a great day and as always, keep it real and keep on keeping on.
    You Friend,
    Tim
    #MSRunnerDude

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