A New Year Allows Us a Time to Celebrate

Taking time to reflect on your success is crucial, says this columnist

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by Joe MacDonald |

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This time of year, I hear many stories of people committing to change and promising to embrace a new way of living. Unfortunately, many of us quickly forget our resolutions. A sense of failure can seep into our lives as, once again, we fail to honor promises made to ourselves. We crash and burn with empty hopes and dreams before the first week of the new year is over. Potential goals now must wait for another day.

As we enter 2023, I encourage everyone to take a different approach to the new year. Instead of looking at things we can improve, why not celebrate success? This season, I hope not to fixate on ways I can change; instead, I want to stop and honor my many achievements. I want to express gratitude for making a difference in my sons’ lives.

As a caregiver, it’s easy to fixate on how I fall short of the mark in providing care for my sons, who have hemophilia. I always question how to provide a better life for those in my charge. I think of the times I blew a vein during an infusion or failed to offer hope in the worst circumstances. My thoughts of failure paralyze me, and I fail to find moments to celebrate my successes in treating my boys.

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I chose to begin this year by honoring my choices regarding care and focusing less on the things I didn’t accomplish. My family faces many issues regarding the best ways to treat and live with hemophilia. Unfortunately, it’s common to focus more on failure than success. We could shift the paradigm and allow hope and joy to grab our first thoughts before concentrating on ways to improve.

Please understand: I don’t mean that I plan to gloss over the many struggles that a chronic illness brings. We all know there are times when we must focus on issues related to bleeding disorders. An emergency happens, and life must adapt to our loved one’s immediate needs. We must do whatever it takes to make it to the other side of an unexpected joint bleed or pain that makes its unwelcome presence known.

In these moments, we must put on our caregiver capes and provide the best space possible for those we hold dear. We must focus our attention on providing the quality treatment most likely to help our loved one weather a medical storm. Our role as hope-giver, torchbearer, and strength-provider must supersede any other part we play as our dear ones struggle through bleeding episodes. At the end of a long, hard struggle, we must step back and honor our choices to provide the best care possible.

While a new year offers us a chance to reevaluate our past choices, remember that we made good decisions when our loved ones suffered challenging times. We can acknowledge the moments when we rose above difficult situations and empowered those in our care with strength and perseverance to overcome their medical crisis.

As we begin a new season, remember to celebrate our victories. When we take time to soothe our souls, we discover that hope lies at the very core. Equipped with reassurance in our abilities, we can be the beacon of light that our loved ones need in times of crisis. I wish all of you, my dear blood brothers and sisters, a very prosperous 2023, and I hope that you take time to rediscover the strength in all of us.

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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