Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Turn it Around Tuesday

Do positive people bug you?  Being married to public speaking coach, I have heard it all.  I think we own every self-help, motivational book out there.  The "Rah-Rah Whoopla" that spews out of the mouths of these multi-millionaires just rubs me the wrong way.

But in the last few years...Especially in the years since my diagnosis of Neurofibromatosis, I have begun to hear what these guys have to say, in a very different way.

I grew up in a very toxic and negative environment, and learned from the best, how to always look at the dark side of things....and assume the worst.

God was a monster, who cursed our family with a dreaded and debilitating "disease" and deserved nothing but blame for inflicting us.  I was taught to hate...and brought up to hide and be ashamed of who I was.

When I would ask questions about what was happening to my older brother, Mike who is severely affected by NF, the response was anger-filled.  My mother didn't want to accept or deal with what was happening to Mike...or to herself.

For me, it felt wrong to always be angry and hateful.  I tried so hard to separate myself from the sewage I was living in.  But being a kid...It didn't work so well for me.

I was wrapped so tightly, and held my anger inside.  Not many know this, but in 8th grade (after a cruel dose of puberty) I swallowed a small handful of sleeping pills, just to make the cruelty of others end.  When I woke up the next morning, I was disappointed....and extremely tired.

I knew something had to change...I just didn't know how to change it....and I was afraid that if I tried to change, and it failed...it would be just another thing in my life that sucked.

I pretended really well...and got through the rest of my childhood relatively unscathed.  It wouldn't be until adulthood, after my diagnosis, that it would all catch up to me.

Everyone has a choice with how they live their life.  Like my brilliant 15 yr old daughter says, "bad things happen everyday, it's up to you, to pick out the good in the bad, even if you have to use tweezers".

The "Rah-Rah Whoopla" now makes more sense to me than ever.  You don't have to be famous, or a billionaire to have a positive attitude.  You don't need to write a book and have 2 thousand friends.  All you need is the will to look at things in a different way...then make the effort to change.

Thrive On!


  1. Great post! A positive attitude can make a huge difference. I am a new follower who found you through Blog Frog. I can't wait to read more about you and learn about neurofibromatosis.

  2. Excellent post! Sharing your feelings about your disease is not easy. As a writer though, you will help others who suffer too, and think they are alone.

  3. Love what your daughter had to say about it. We would all be better off, even if we had to use tweezers, to pick out the bad and focus on the good.
    Great post. Great attitude.
    Thanks to Blog Frog for leading me to your site.

  4. Great post/blog!

  5. Great post. I especially loved what your daughter had to say about the tweezers. Brilliant.

  6. I agree with you about your attitude effecting everyone! It's amazing how a little change in your mindset can make such a difference. Negativity is so contagious, BUT, luckily, so is being positive!

  7. A positive attitude, self confidence and knowing how to be happy are the most important things for success in all aspects of life. I'm thankful I was taught all of that as it's what got me through and still gets me through the rough times.


  8. Thank you for this blog posting - your daughter is brilliant and it is wonderful that she has a positive attitude, can't every say enough about that. Negativity and shame are downers and it is difficult to live everyday in anger, bitterness, and afraid of what others think. Good for you! Enjoyed your post very much.

  9. Great post it is amazing how our parents effect us, but it is great that as time goes on we can decide not accept certain behaviors or attitudes. Your daughter reminds me of mine who is now 20 wish for such a young age. Another problem with negativity is it can effect your health, I saw it first hand with my mom. She was sick all the time, but it was due to her attitude so, the doctors never found anything. Way to go turning things around and for sharing and being so honest. Followed you here from the Blog Frog.

  10. It is so true, that our choice to see the positive in things really does improve our attitude. Only we, ourselves, are responsible for our own happiness. Positive affirmation from positive friends helps us stay focused on the positive too.