Thanks Giving

It has ripples, this thing. This exhibit. This fulfilling of a dream I thought was just a dream, something to wish for, think about, but never realize. A dream, a fancy, not an achievable goal. And besides the mindboggle of holycrapIhaveanexhibit!, there’s something more, a deeper awe. Because as Dawn said when I told her about it, "just think of how much have changed in the last five years".

Five years ago, I was on the wrong side of the abyss, descending into one of the biggest flares I've ever had, losing function, losing myself, losing my life. Five years ago, the idea of manageable pain was a pipe dream and the life I have today unimaginable.

And then came the Biologics, first Enbrel and then Humira and they gave me my life back, both literally and figuratively. The change from who and where I was five years ago is so vast it's hard to comprehend. It's happened slowly, moment after moment, strength after strength coming back, building on what was there before, like coral and looking back, I can see how one thing stood on the shoulders (so to speak) of another, but yet... I look at my life today and the tears still come, the gratitude so deep, so profound that it fills me up with silent awe because there are no words to describe this level of joy.

And it's not just the big things, like fulfilling a dream, like having a job, like finding love when I'd come to accept that it wouldn't happen again, but the small things, as well. It's normal blood tests (OK, so that one's pretty big, too), it's being part of events and family visits, it's laughing every day, it's whining about being so busy that I can't think - because I'm busy! It's moments like the days where my shot of Humira kicks me into super health, so I fall on my dinner like I haven't eaten in days - because I'm starving, not nauseous. It's moments like when the orange I have for dessert is so intensely and deliciously orange, hitting my mouth with a burst of flavour so complex and sunny I almost weep. It's chasing a bumblebee among the lavender for that perfect shot, it's having the mental and physical space to think so I can write and even when I injure myself, even when the pain fills up that mental and physical space so I can't think, it's knowing that with patience and with effort I have the ability to bounce back. It may take a while, it may feel like forever, but I can and I do and I have. And it is all because of Humira.

I live a miracle every day. I live a miracle so profound that I don't even notice it half the time. And on this Thanksgiving Monday, I give thanks. To the people who invented this medication, to the taxpayers of Ontario who pay for it and make my life possible, for being given the chance to give back a little of what I have received. I give thanks to the miracle.