“The pain taught me how to write and the writing taught me how to heal.”
I am excited, honored and in awe that this is my 200th blog post. Today’s post is dedicated to you: all of my amazing supporters who have followed my journey here. From faithful readers who have been with me since the beginning to those who are reading this blog for the first time, from those of you who have shared beautiful comments to quiet readers whom I have yet to learn are reading my articles, today I celebrate you and how much your support has had a positive impact in my life.
I’ve been contributing to PKD Connection since June of 2012, sharing so much of my heart and life – the highs and lows and all of the emotions that come with both. I send emails to myself and jot down notes on paper when I think of something I want to write about for you, or something that inspires me that I feel might inspire you, too. I have written articles from my couch while icing my back, on airplanes, at my parents’ house in Pennsylvania while recovering from surgeries, on vacations and in hospital beds while in pain and sick. Nothing could make me miss a deadline, skip a week or an opportunity to write a blog and share my journey with you. I want you to know how much you mean to me.
I define “you” as everyone who is fighting PKD, as well as our caregivers, family members, friends, loved ones and anyone seeking inspiration and positivity. I write with the hope that my first-hand knowledge, experiences and challenges in life will, in turn, educate and lift others up. I write because I deeply believe in the importance of sharing our stories to raise awareness, which will lead to more research and a better life for future generations. When I receive a comment like, “This is just what I needed today,” I feel that I am accomplishing my mission. If each post touches one life or helps one person in need, I am fulfilled. We are in this together to help one another and encourage and inspire each other. It is important to me for you to know that you are not alone.
You have, in turn, let me know that I am not alone and I thank you for that. You have supported and encouraged me through surgeries and illnesses. We have discussed serious topics together, such as the decision to have children and body image with PKD. You have celebrated milestones with me, like my kidney transplant anniversaries and the release of the first treatment for PKD in Canada.
I believe everything happens for a reason, and that we cross paths with people in life at just the right time. The reason may not be revealed right away, but it will be in good time. Eight months after my first post on PKD Connection, a disk in my back herniated and my life has not been the same since. After working full time for 10 years post transplant, I had to stop working due to my severe back complications and chronic pain. This was not easy and is still hard for me. Writing for you, however, has been a blessing and a constant positive in my life. It is something I love to do, and I look forward to and appreciate all of your comments.
Thank you for reading and for joining me on this extraordinary journey. Knowing you read my posts and that they inspire and help you gives a greater purpose for all I have and continue to endure. You fuel my passion to keep sharing and writing. It has been a wonderful source of healing and a constant in my life for the past four-and-a-half years. I can never thank you enough. Please know that I care about each of you, and this 200th post has come to life because of you! The pain has taught me how to write and the writing has taught me how to heal and you have been a big part in helping to make that happen!
In honor of this milestone, I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to share your PKD story, your thoughts on my blog and/or what topics you’d like me to write about in the future.