You are a survivor

When I was a kid I remember running around the yard trying to catch the wind in a jar. What a sight I was flailing about swinging a jar in one hand and slapping a lid on top of the jar with the other. But you know, no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t catch anything in my jar except maybe a bug every now and then. And I have to tell you, I tried hard…really hard.

The wind simply can not be contained no matter how hard you try. You can’t physically see it. You can’t touch it, hold it, catch it or stop it, but you can feel it as it whips through your hair or pushes against your body. You can hear it whistling through the trees and around the corners of buildings. You can even see the damage it leaves behind with broken branches, toppled power lines and damaged houses.

When the wind is blowing gently, it’s amazing to sit and watch the leaves as they fly through the air or the trees and grass as they dance together in rhythm. But its power can overtake even the strongest of the strong and cause problems that no one expected.

I view life much like the wind. Life is enjoyable and comforting when everything is going great, but then there comes a day—and we all have them—when destruction comes as we are hit with the brute force of a storm that no one saw coming.

Some days life gives you a party with lots of hugs and kisses. Other days it throws you down a flight of stairs leaving you battered, bruised and hurting. Although life doesn’t seem fair and at times appears to offer way more storms that sunny skies, I have learned a few things in the process of living it.

I may not be able to catch life in a jar in order to control how it behaves. I can’t touch it, hold it, or even stop events from happening, but I can live it and in living it I get this wonderful opportunity of being able to feel both the sadness and the joys it leaves behind.

Sometimes it leaves destruction in its path like heartaches, damaged finances, broken relationships and Multiple Sclerosis, but that doesn’t mean I’m supposed to stop living. It just means living is going to be a bit harder to manage than I expected.

I can’t control the direction it sends me in or the troubles it leaves along the way, but I do get to choose whether I will laugh or cry, sing or whine, bend or break. I also get the amazing opportunity to dance in the rain and stomp through the puddles that get left behind.

Today is a brand new day and it’s your day to shine…to shine through the storm. Don’t let what you’re going through keep you from living. And although life is something you can’t contain in a jar, you are stronger than anything it sends your way. Don’t lose hope. You got this!

And remember this: You wouldn’t know what a good day was without experiencing a bad day. You wouldn’t appreciate times of laughter if you had never cried. You would never know what true happiness was without going through times of despair. You are stronger because you’ve lived it all. You didn’t ask for this life you are living, but you are going to make it. You are a survivor.

MS Gets on My NervesMS WarriorMS Superhero  


About the Author
About the Author
Penelope Conway

Penelope Conway
Penelope started Positive Living with MS as a way to help others with MS stay positive in the midst of a terrible disease. She believes that staying positive and holding onto hope is the key to waking up each morning with the strength to get through the day. Multiple Sclerosis may never go away, but neither will her determination and her drive to help others through the journey.

26 replies
  1. Rodger Ashton-Smith
    Rodger Ashton-Smith says:

    That is right on the point Penelope. I have ha a few (3) strange falls lately and I still on’t know what happened. The last one came last Monday. I had chopped up enough wood for a couple of days, prepared tea for us and got it cooke cooked. When our son got home he dished it up. after I finished it starts to get a bit hazy. I must have thought it was alright to take my plate to the kitchen and about halfway there I collapse and fell on my back on the wooden floor banging my head rather hard leaving me a bit woozy and not being able to even read fora few hours.
    Now the strange thing is I on’t remember getting up or even falling just that horrible feel something ha happened that I wasn’t present for. Quite weird.
    But I feel better now and I will be getting mf fortnightly injection this afternoon
    So from all of this I blame MS for taking over when things were looking up because it seems te be the only explanation to me.
    But I’m still alive an carrying on

  2. Heather Kray says:

    I needed to read this today. I hurt so bad. My 2 and 4 year Olds won’t clean up, and I can’t get off the couch. The kids yelling and the dog barking constantly are like nails on a chalkboard. I cry out to Jesus. Then I read this article. Thank you. In 10 and a half years of this ugly disease, I have never found so much comfort outside of Jesus than I do in your posts and articles. Thank you. May God bless you.

  3. Mollie Watkins says:

    I so needed this today, the past few days haven’t been great and I have been trying to prove (to others…but mostly myself) that I can still do things. Trying to do this has been wrecking me and this (along with my husband ) reminds me I need to live my life for what it is today and know that tomorrow will be better!

  4. JohnConnie Iverson says:

    Great article! Thanks for sharing! I allow myself one day a year to feel depressed, (I really don’t like that feeling), but when I do, I know how truly blessed I am to be able to share another day with my husband, my rock, and my beautiful family, especially my grandchildren! A 32 year survivor!

  5. Chris
    Chris says:

    Thank you for inspiring so many Penelope! I share your words with friends who don’t have MS but do have challenges! You keep on inspiring and we’ll keep on BEING inspired! Thank you! May you have a day you want to save in a jar today!!
    Blessings!

  6. Barbara
    Barbara says:

    Thank you Penelope for the words of encouragement. I have to remember that I am a survivor of this ongoing battle. God bless you😇

  7. Jan Hoback Jasper says:

    I need to remember this right now…trying to get better from a UTI is never fun, unless standing over/crawling over/mopping over the toilet is fun. I know I’m blessed to be alive, but these days with challenges…

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