Words cannot adequately describe this journey of these past two months. In the beginning I thought I was just educating my friends and family about CF, giving a voice to other people with CF, and divulging a portion of my life I had only allowed a very few close people a glimpse into. There is no possible way I could have known what this experience would mean and how it would change me. Has it changed you?
How has it changed me? I don't feel like I am lying to everyone anymore. Not that I was ever being "dishonest," but I worked so hard and endlessly to hide CF from everyone. I think about how exhausting it was, now that I am looking back at it all: 27 years of denial and trying to bury it away from the world. As CF progressed, the harder I fought to paint myself up and put on a good face for everyone. To be honest, I did it for myself, too. Some days require a bit more make-up to fool the world, but I have become pretty darn good at hiding the shortness of breath, exhaustion, fear, and pain stirring within. The best compliment? People being shocked, astounded, or simply saying, "I had absolutely no idea." I have hidden the truths of CF from a lot of people for a long time: even the closest of people in my life. I never want the people I love to worry, especially about me. I don't want them to look at me with heartache in their eyes thinking, "that's so sad" or "how is she really doing?" CF is a part of my and will continue to be more so as the seasons change. That's my life. Each wonderful moment made possible because of each beautiful breath. The breaths will get shorter, the fight will get more intense, but my love, gratitude, and passion for life will only grow. Just as I am so thankful for the season of Peonies, I too am thankful for this season of honesty.
What else has this blog shown me? Just how many truly amazing people I have in my life and how much good there is in the world. My life is beyond beautiful. I see the beauty of my life reflected in your smile, your hug, your kind words, your laughter, your tears. I only hope I can pay forward and repay all the love and kindness I have been shown. Thank you to my friends, family, my CF team: each beautiful breath I take is because of you. Love to you all.