Joy Can Survive And Revive

Lightbulb shinning bright surrounded by burnt out lightbulbs.

Photo by: Master

Didn’t realize how emotionally depleted I was.

Babe picked me up last night from Gram’s (Grandmother), and as we were driving away he asked….

 Did you have a good time?

I started crying!

I feel broken by this disability. It becomes a dark cloud that desires to envelop the soul.

Spending 2 days with Gram, nieces, and my sisters, I am reminded that darkness and light coexist.

If this beast of an illness stays with me the rest of my life, I have a powerful defense… JOY!

Throughout my life Gram has unintentionally (possibly intentionally) groomed me for this very moment in my life. She has reminded me that sources of POSITIVE joy can be pulled from many life experiences.

*My sister taking me to the hair salon after-hours so I can get my hair cut and colored!

*My niece laughing out loud in 5 minute increments because she is happy!

*My family holding hands in a circle several years after my grandfather’s passing thanking God for the beautiful memories we are left behind.

Guess what? This vestibular condition was present during every one of those moments! Yet, JOY was still present.

Balling up and internalizing POSITIVE moments of joy are going to be critical to combating this chronic illness longterm.

I also realized…

“I’m not who I was before!”

I am NEVER going to be who I was before.

Does that mean I am not entitled to joy?

Does that mean joy will not exist because I am living with a chronic illness?

Does that mean I can’t spread joy because I grieve?


Joy is a FEELING!

Joy can SURVIVE and REVIVE even in the midst of deep sorrow!

This “brand new kinda me” has been years in the making.

I was flipping through the channels at Gram’s and came across this song being performed by Alicia Keys!

Listen to the words.

“Brand New Me”…

Much love,

PS: “It took a long long time to get here.” Be patient with yourself! Growth and change are critical to becoming the brand new kinda you!


I STILL Got IT! On My Walk Today I Was Actually Hit On

Let me break down the scenario:

I was about 1/2 way through my walk…

I smiled and waved at a gentleman that is part of my walking path landscape. He yelled for me to come over. I happily walked across the street.

He greeted me with a smile..”You want to stop for a beer, soda or maybe a water?”

I started beaming. I responded graciously with… “Oh no thank you, I gotta get this walk in.”

He says… “What’s your name?” I proudly respond, “Marissa”.

He leans in…”What was that?”  He is now holding my hand tightly!

“MARISSA” I respond with conviction.

He loudly proclaims…”You are welcome to come over ANYTIME! Drop on by and we will share a beer or soda.”

My response was giddy…”Thank you so much for the offer. I will be sure to bring my fiance on by. You will really love him!”


“No… I don’t want to meet him, I just want to see you again.” I smiled and said… “I better be on my way.”  (He is still holding my hand at this point)

He leans in closer.. “Tell me your name one more time?” … I slightly chuckle and say…

“Marissa”. He smiles and let’s my hand go. “Ok Marissa, see you around! The invitation is ALWAYS open!”

I admit I walked away with a little pep in my step!

I am PUMPED. I still GOT IT regardless of my walking stick and taped up glasses! WHOOP WHOOP.

Much love,

P.S. (SHHHHhhhhhhhhhh… don’t tell anyone that he was about 85 years young! )