Posted in after the diagnosis, coping with chronic illness, coping with life threatening illness, living with chronic illness, Living with Illness, Uncategorized

Never Give Up

It’s easy to say “never give up hope” and something very different to actually implement.  Hope is a necessary ingredient to health and healing and there are times when it’s a daunting task.  There are many things that play into the hope equation including your physical health, symptoms and side-effects, your lab reports and the prognosis given by your doctor.  Many feel like they are being swept away as if a Tsunami hit their lives.  Keeping the hope factor alive is important on the journey to wellness.

This past weekend was the Kentucky Derby, an American institution.  Along with big hats and mint juleps, Americans across the country crowd around television sets in hopes of getting a glimpse at the horse who will crowned king…at least for a while.  Lo and behold, the horse that won the race wasn’t the favorite.  In fact, he was the biggest underdog of the race.  “Mine that Bird” won the Kentucky Derby.  The odds of him winning were 50:1; those are pretty bad odds.  The horse not only won, but he won by the biggest margin in the past 96 years; that’s incredible.

If you were to use “Mine that Bird” as a touchstone for hope you’d be setting yourself a good role model.  Yes it’s true that the jockey is just as much the winner as the horse, but as a pair they conquered what most thought was physically and statistically impossible.  The teaming up of these two created a synergistic explosion of hope, leading to a great win.

How will you translate this story of hope into your own life?  Are there any similarities between the story from the Kentucky Derby and your own life in facing a chronic or life-threatening illness?  Have the odds you’ve been given by doctors reflect how you really feel or are they simply interpreting the numbers?  What do you feel would be the most beneficial actions that would increase your experience of hope and healing.

It’s easy to write off the long-shot because many people don’t want to back a loser.  Your health should never be considered in the loser category.  “Mind that Bird” not only came up from last place, but the slipped through the eye of the needle to overtake all the other horses in his path.  Can you slip through the eye of the needle making every opportunity for health and healing a reality?  What can you do to keep your hope alive?


I've lived my life in service to others. I'm focused on mental health and how it impacts our relationships, culture, and society. Through creative expression and narrative I believe we can impact change.

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