Giving Thanks on the 4th Anniversary of My Column

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by Joe MacDonald |

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In April 2018, I began writing this column. Over the four years that I’ve shared stories from my heart, I cannot believe that my family has endured many bad moments associated with hemophilia. Yet I’ve also chronicled the joyous times we celebrated, even in the middle of overwhelming darkness. I continue to share my philosophy of life: that hope can overcome the dark and the light can find a way through. This idea is my gospel (good news), which I apply to every part of my life.

I hope that the many stories I continue to share help to motivate all who read my column to look for pockets of rest and renewal. We must search diligently, remembering that “opportunity is not a lengthy visitor.” Because we don’t know when our loved ones may experience crippling pain, our purpose is to seek moments of hope quickly. Sometimes we have a season when all seems well, while others leave us with moments to search for the light.

I remember my approach to my column, as one who keeps his struggles close to his vest. I needed a vehicle to express my feelings regarding the trials, tribulations, joys, and happiness of raising children with bleeding disorders.

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My wife is much better than me when processing difficult situations or events in our family’s life. I tend to hold things in and direct traffic, often masking the anxiety I feel in the direst of circumstances. As a result, I fail to see the many unresolved issues that creep into my life.

Writing gave me a pathway by which I began to deal with some of the struggles that caregiving often brings when managing a chronic illness. While typing my thoughts regarding life stories, I realized that the life I continue to carve out with my wife and two sons is a love story that reaches the depths of my soul. The fantastic adventures we’ve shared and holding one another’s hands in the worst of circumstances made me proud of my wife concerning the mighty young men we created.

The column serves as a portal by which I discover my first love story, the one before my sons. At the start of any place within my marriage — new job, new car, children, hemophilia, hospitals — my wife, Cazandra, was in the beginning with me. Although I look back at our struggles and give thanks to all the people in this world, she is the one with whom I share my life. She is a formidable and powerful woman who loves her family with a ferociousness unequaled. Her strength serves as the driving force that holds the MacDonald family together.

I equate my writing to lines of yarn, each brightly colored and appearing to connect the events of my life. Yet every strand returns to the center of the whole storyboard, my family. Each column contains the reality that I carry my sons and wife with me in each subject I write. They are the place where I discover true happiness.

On this fourth anniversary of writing my column, I feel gratitude for all I have experienced. My goal is to continue sharing my thoughts with the hope that someone may find a respite from the storm that chronic illness often brings. I pray that hope may shine through every letter of every word I write. May we continue to discover in ourselves the very best we may give to a world that needs to hear some good news.

Note: Hemophilia News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Hemophilia News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to hemophilia.


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