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I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.

Maya Angelou

The previous blog post was leading up to my decision to celebrate my survivorship each day, to appreciate any improvement, no matter how small, to never get too high or too low (as my wise therapist Mark advised), to manage my goals and expectations (as Mark also suggested), and finally - to celebrate my life!

This “celebration” wasn’t my idea. I acquired this great idea from Jane who encourages me daily, a dear friend (who knows who she is) who advised me to celebrate every large and small accomplishment, which I’ve been doing regularly and it feels fabulous! And finally, Leslie, the woman in my book writing group I described in Part 1 created an annual tradition that I thought was super, so I vowed to do this every year!

Leslie celebrates the date of her bike accident every year, designating it her RE-BIRTHday! She plans the day out meticulously, incorporating all of her favorite things and enjoys every minute of it! Isn’t that a great idea?! I thought so!

September 17th was the 6th anniversary of my stroke and I lived it up! Since I’d spent far too much time inside writing and researching my book, as well as nursing my right knee which has been compromised due to my 6-year over-dependence on it; I decided to begin the day with a nice walk at Kachina Wetlands near Flagstaff. Then, we enjoyed a delicious outdoor breakfast at Brandy’s, a favorite breakfast and lunch restaurant in Flagstaff. We even went to the grocery store to pick up a few last-minute items for our upcoming RV trip to Kansas City to watch the Chiefs play and then onto the Ozarks!

I can’t remember the last time I entered a grocery store! Finally, back to the cabin for a grilled steak dinner and a special bottle of red wine! What a great day it was, and I’ll be celebrating every re-birthday from now on!

Prior to this brilliant idea, I dreaded every stroke anniversary! I just needed to change my perspective and attitude!

Of course, celebrating each day is just as important!

I encourage you to do what you can to celebrate the fact that you survived! You may not feel it’s cause for celebration right now, but believe me, you will one day!

Until next time, remember - you’re not alone on this journey! We’re all in this together!




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