THE BLOG
02/06/2012 12:14 pm ET | Updated Apr 07, 2012

Nowhere to Go But Up

We've all been in situations when we feel like we're standing on the edge of a climb and there's no way to go but down, there is no way out, and one slip of the foot and it's over. Life is a series of moments where we are tested in every aspect -- emotional, physical and spiritual -- and sometimes we find it difficult to come out the other side without having a dimmer view of the world.

So how do you turn that negative into a positive without turning into a psychotic Mary Poppins or denying your true emotions?

I admit, in my life I've done that and seen the people around me do that. It's not healthy, and it tends to make people wonder when you're being sincere and when you're not. It's often impossible to distinguish.

I come from people whose view on the world people would consider very negative, where it's not uncommon to be told to go to hell when you walk into a room and everything is a worst case scenario.

But even while I was sick I never reached the level of "I'm going to die." I admit I did do the whole "write up the will" thing on my computer, but I knew that I could never do anything drastic. That was basically just enough to get me through the hump of wondering what was next.

The constant question I am asked is, "how do you stay so positive through pure hell?" Simple. I look at my situation as it could be so much worse. I don't have to worry about the side effects of chemotherapy or radiation, no nausea, worries about if a PET scan will reveal anything, living in fear if that this treatment doesn't work, I'll have to go for something more aggressive and I don't have to worry about losing my hair, which is usually the first question asked. I have two days of exhaustion after infusion and some bruising but that's all.

I feel lucky because I think I have it under control and aside from the occasional trip to to the hospital to control migraines and some worries about built-up scar tissue that could be problematic in the long run, but for the most part, I feel like a normal person and I stay upbeat because my prognosis is so good.

I see people every time I go to infusion having chemo and it breaks my heart. I have nothing but respect for them and wish them all the best. I know that although I've been given this awful immune system, I consider myself very lucky that I can live some sort of semi-normal life.

Have you ever been in a situation where you needed to look at the positive aspect for own piece of mind? How did you cope?