Positivity Prevails

CALIFORNIA-summer15-WEB-5882There is one question I have been asked more than any other. “How do you stay so positive?” When thinking of all that I have to endure, there are times I wonder the same thing. We each have different dispositions that make us the special individuals we are. These characteristics may be inherited, picked up by our surroundings or a response to what we experience in our lives.

Through our voyages with PKD, we endure many emotional phases. There’s dealing with the diagnosis of the disease, chronic pain, the unwanted side effects, dialysis, surgeries and stress, just to name a few. We did not ask for PKD nor would we wish it on anyone. However, we have a choice of how we will cope with this disease, and I choose positivity.

Now, my positive spirit does not mean I am smiling all the time, jumping for joy, or oblivious to reality and the struggles of life. My positivity is the way I choose to live my life. It is a combination of emotions and actions. For me, negativity would make my health hurdles harder to bear.

Valen & Noah 2I put my heart and soul into life. If I am working on a project or have something exciting on the horizon, I am always full of exuberance and hope. Whether it is my work or test results in regards to my health, I will always choose positivity. I know this personality trait can open my heart to being hurt or let down, but I accept that.

What helps keep me on a positive path is resiliency. During difficult times, we have to dig down deep to find our optimistic spirit. In order to do this, I come to peace with the situation, know that everything happens for a reason and confidently move on. I think the quicker we bounce back from trials in life, the better off we will be.

Positivity isn’t about being happy all the time – it is a way of life. I stay positive by surrounding myself with positive people, living in a positive environment, working hard, staying focused on what is important, taking the best care of myself and striving to not compare my life to others. I also find contentment knowing I am doing the best I can and keep moving forward, because life goes on. I know positivity comes more naturally for some than others, but I believe we all have the power to obtain this lifestyle. In the end, I trust positivity does prevail.

How do you stay positive?

Valen & Noah 1

 

20 Comments

  1. Amy Dixon-Eggebroten

    I stay positive by being inspired by people (like you) that continue to overcome adversities!

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      Thank you Amy and thanks for all you do for PKD!!! ☀️

      Reply
  2. Jan

    Thank you for sharing your positive attitude with us. Reading things like this and other inspirational stories help me to stay positive. Also, if I focus my thoughts on helping others I become motivated and more positive.

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      Thank you Jan! Helping others helps to keep me positive too!

      Reply
  3. Maureen Gardner

    Every week I read your story and admire how positive you are!
    Whenever I find myself feeling down I look to others and how I can help them.
    My career as a nurse allows me to do this everyday.
    Thanks for being such an inspiration and sharing your stories!

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      Thank you so much!
      You’re so welcome! Wonderful you are a nurse and able to help care for others. Nurses played a big part in helping me recover from health hurdles. Thanks for all you do!

      Reply
  4. Rosemarie bartus

    I always am impressed by your positivity. You are a bright light to all PKD sufferers.

    Reply
    • dominique

      i totally agree !! valen your positivley wonderful!!!

      Reply
      • Valen Keefer

        Aww, thank you Dominique!

        Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      This means a lot! Thank you Rosemarie! ❤️

      Reply
  5. Julie

    Love reading your stories! Thanks so much for sharing. My Mom was/is my inspiration for remaining positive. She had PKD and a variety of health issues but was always positive, always had a smile and had a wonderful uplifting spirit. She was on dialysis for over 15 years before she passed away. She never knew that I ended up having PKD or that two of her Grandsons would too! From her I learned to accept dialysis as part of my life and to keep moving forward and not let PKD stop me. I was blessed with the gift of life from a deceased donor over 15 years ago. One of my sons passed away after 3 years on dialysis and the other is facing dialysis in the near future but is also being elevated for a transplant. I’m hopeful that my Mom’s positive outlook and attitude has inspired and is part of him as well.

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      You’re so welcome!
      Thank you for sharing your mom’s beautiful spirit with all of us. I’m so sorry your one son passed and sure hope the other one receives a transplant. Congratulations on 15 years. I know your mom’s positivity lives on in all of you! ❤️ Wishing your family all the best!

      Reply
  6. carmen

    I agree staying positive is a CHOICE. I stay positive by reading my Bible, specifically verses on healing and facing trials. Every person/story in the Bible faced adversity. Noah, David, Solomon, Ruth, Esther, Elijah, Elisha, Isaiah, Joshua, Paul, John, James, Peter, and of course, Jesus…
    ” I choose joy!”
    I too, surround myself with positive friends. Even through social media, if i see several negative posts from a “friend”– I unfriend them. Life is too short.

    I attend church weekly and a small group or bible study group, weekly.

    During my dialysis treatments, I read an inspirational book. I listen to Christian/Worship music in the car…

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      So happy to hear that you choose positivity and joy! Thank you for sharing how you keep on a positive path. Wishing you all the best!

      Reply
  7. H. Perbatasari

    I keep positive by focusing on my work, traveling a lot and never think that I have PKD on my body. I am living normal like others, the different only I take care my health more extra than those normal people. Afterall, I love and enjoy my life, I do what I wanna do.

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      This is fantastic! So happy to hear of the positive life you are leading. Way to go!!!

      Reply
  8. Noelia

    It’s always uplifting reading your blog and this one in particular it’s a very important one for those of us dealing with a chronic condition like PKD. I was having a bit of a difficult day yesterday as I was thinking about my dialysis training sessions coming to an end early next week and starting home dialysis where no nurse will be by my side anymore. Quite scary I thought. Today I had a long chat with my dialysis center social worker and our talk made me feel so much better he reminded me of taking it one day at a time, live the moment. I do this to stay positive but, sometimes I need someone to remind of it. I also pray everyday, love to read blogs like yours and, talking with family and friends.

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      I’m so happy to know that my blog is uplifting for you. PKD and dialysis is not easy. Also, changing our routine can be scary. I’m happy to know that your talk with your social worker comforted you. Good luck with your at home dialysis treatments. You are strong and I trust you will do just fine with this transition. Take good care and sending lots of positivity and love your way.

      Reply
  9. Dwight

    Valen, Thanks for this column. I’m sure without these details some people would roll their eyes and not understand your outlook. It’s a great approach and you can see from the comments that people like ourselves who choose to live this way get a lot of benefits – being negative really makes you sicker and of course robs you of the life we have been given… I stay positive by living in gratitude for all the advantages I’ve had and do have in my life. Realizing that “everyone has something” and my “something” is PKD provides me perspective. I don’t have cancer or heart disease in my family, so my positive outlook is that this will be my health challenge, and compared to those other things, PKD isn’t so bad.

    Reply
    • Valen Keefer

      Hi Dwight,
      I completely agree and appreciate your positive perspective. We must continue to have fun and make the most of our lives. As bad as PKD can be, it could be worse. Thank you for reading my blog and sharing your thoughts. I hope you had a great holiday weekend. Hugs!

      Reply

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