Select Page


Failure is only the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently. 

–Henry Ford (1863-1947), founder of Ford Motor Company

Are you ready to give up?

I was HONORED to be on “Never Give Up” – Stories of Ordinary People Who Have Experienced the Extraordinary. Definitely check out her podcast – it’s a whole series of interviews with people who, well…never give up hope!

I Can Hold On

A little note about this art “I Can Hold On” – This was the second piece I ever created in Yale Hospital. It was a terrible, frustrating and frightening time. I remember ripping out each letter of “I Can Hold On” and collaging it onto the canvas. I didn’t believe I could, but I did hold on somehow.
It’s not always easy – but it’s worth it.  Listen to Carol’s podcast and tell me how you keep going!

Do you know a survivor in your life?  Someone that never gives up?

Here are five ways I’ve learned to keep that hope alive.

1.) Try to see the good in circumstances.  It wasn’t easy, but I found 27 positive lessons from 27 surgeries which you can read here.  What is the opportunity in your obstacle?

Wish In A Bottle

2.) Try to see the good in others.  This is an amazing rarely-seen TED talk by Victor Frankl – a holocaust survivor – on why we see the good in others.  If he can, you can too.

3.) Scrapbook your rejections.  Everything’s better in retrospect – or in a scrapbook. Check out these rejection letters sent to famous people.

4.) Think small.  Take one day at a time.  You don’t have to climb the entire set of…oh well I thing Martin Luther King Jr. said it best:

“Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase.”

Of course, I’m also partial to this:

5.) Take a break.  And then start again.  I’ve had times where I thought I’d reached the “triumphant ending” of my journey…just to land back in the hospital.  Slips are okay.  You can always get back on. Don’t be discouraged by little setbacks.  Take a minute to catch your breath.  And then try again.

dancing flames

“Courage doesn’t always roar, sometimes it’s the quiet voice at the end of the day whispering ‘I will try again tomorrow”
Mary Anne Radmacher

Difficult Times…

It’s easy to say “don’t give up”,  right?  Wrong.

If you look back on the archives of this blog, you’ll see that even after my digestive system was miraculously reconstructed, I still had so many highs and lows on this detour – and it wasn’t such a beautiful detour at the time!  Sometimes, I just didn’t want to go on.

This is a post from March 23rd, 2011:

I’ve just received news that I will have to go on TPN for at least a good four weeks.  That means I won’t be able to eat anything at all, which I’ve had to experience before unfortunately, but it is never fun.  My fistulas don’t seem to be healing and the doctors believe that I need total bowel rest for them to completely close.  So it will be a hard month, but I’m sure I’ll be blogging a lot to get through this!  Wish me luck…
I like to draw with crayons when I’m feeling contemplative.
Looking Back:
I wouldn’t say it was a good four weeks. It was more like a good four months.  But anyway, that’s the power of hope- it can get you through anything.  You just have to keep going.
This was a song I wrong – I Want Out – which basically said, well, I want out of this!  Sometimes you really don’t want to face life.  But I faced life – by writing about how I didn’t want to face it at all.  Hey, whatever it takes to get through!  Listen to it here:

Songs, art, tantrums, daydreams…How do you keep going?
Just like the process of building up backgrounds…don’t ask when things will “get better” or “get prettier” or “be easier.”  Just keep plugging along and trust.
“If the path be beautiful, let us not ask where it leads.”
Anatole France
That is what I learned through this painting and though my life so far –  not knowing where you’re going, but enjoying each step of the way.
And when you enjoy every step…
Sometimes we need a bit more help.  I’ve put together a big directory of mental health resources, and feel free to add your own.
 And if you’re in college…well it’s hard keep going sometimes – I’ve got a special program just for you!
How will you keep going today?
Don’t forget to listen to Carol’s wonderful interview series!

bring gutless & Grateful to campus here!
%d bloggers like this: