“As a peaceful warrior, I would choose when, where and how I would behave. With that commitment, I began to live the life of a warrior.” — Dan Millman
My wife describes me as loving, having a huge heart, feisty and having a child-like innocence in the way I experience happiness and excitement in the little things every single day.
Meghan sees and understands me in the way everyone should and deserves to be. To give and receive that kind of love is truly a gift and I hope everyone has this or will find it in their lifetime. I can honestly say I love our life and my mind, body and spirit in such a complete way that anything threatening that harmony in any way brings out the warrior in me.
The feistiness Meghan uses to describe me has been heightened by two critical illnesses in the almost 4 years we have known each other. The warrior is in all of us and, for me, during my first illness, I learned this was a tenacious spirit that never gave up or allowed anyone to dismiss what I knew in my hardest instincts to be true. Developing my warrior was the best gift to myself, as it gave me grounding, perception and a standard to measure against when any doctor or specialist tried to dismiss what was going on in my body or simplify it to a depression or anxiety of some kind or worse, saying there was nothing wrong with me. It was also developing an honest awareness of my body and becoming a true advocate for myself, taking charge and running the show when I absolutely needed to, when there was no other choice but to do so. You have to reach deep within and pull out the love you have for your life, yourself and all the family, friends and army supporting and loving you and keep going, keep advocating for all of you and keep pushing for answers, a plan, a diagnosis, treatment and moving forward.
For anyone that feels a connection to this or has experienced this for yourself, I just want you to know you are not alone. I am also truly sorry and my heart goes out to each one of you. I encourage you to keep reading and find inspiration in my stories and what embracing my warrior has allowed me to do. For simplicity sake, I can say in three words what it did: saved my life.
My hope and goal, in creating this blog, is to teach you what I have learned through my illnesses, bring hope to all of you who feel lost on what to do next or where to turn, how to find answers or get doctors, specialists or nurses to listen to you and, more importantly, to believe you when you tell them I don’t know what is wrong with me, but I do know something is not right and I need you to help me so I can get my life back. These words are crucially important and must be repeated at every visit, so the doctors you are speaking to, who may or may not believe you, know how grave your condition is and that you are not able to function or live your normal life.
Before I move ahead, I think it is important for me to now share my story of my first illness and how I embraced my warrior to get my life back.