Thursday, May 21, 2020

…therefore, I am

…therefore, I am
(a continuation of Act IV, Scene I)

In my life, the early stages of Act II and Act III comprised the dissolution of who I was before attempting any opportunity to become the person I was to be.
[Remember your promise: “Unlike before, I will not destroy the foundation already set – my efforts to thrive cannot abandon life I love and cherish.”]

The reason I shared that commitment a few weeks ago was to establish the constant reminder – a token I shall carry with me as I trek, stumble, and eventually progress through this journey of attainment. Who I become, the man I will embrace, cannot dismiss even the slightest bit of his past.

Who I was became the bedrock of my being, a stage set for the people in my life. They were the connections to every shared experience. My experiences were the bases for every grain of knowledge and understanding. Understanding drove every action, intentional or otherwise. Every action determined who I was; the sum of who I was is who I am today.
[Your bedrock?]
My bedrock.

Who am I?
I am a father, a son, a brother, an uncle, a cousin… I am a family.
I am a friend, a lover, a sidekick and companion.
I’m a veteran, holding his wings and crossed sabers close to heart.
I’m a Defender, a member of the Long Gray Line.
I am retired, but still a business professional, author, and a man searching for his next career.
I’m an advocate, a mentor, a philanthropist, a voice.
I am an athlete, striving for more, working with what I have and where I am limited (just like every other athlete).
I’m a hack cook, experimenting to find the best combinations to meet every tasty nutrition goal.
I am so much — I will be even more tomorrow.
My actions, understanding, knowledge, experiences, the people in my life made me who I am.

I am a man fighting multiple sclerosis, a disease that consistently attacks and jeopardizes absolutely every physical aspect of my being. My disability is an experience, one that drove people into (and out of) my life as it became a major part of my experiences, knowledge, understanding, and actions.

It will continue to do so.

Multiple sclerosis is not my bedrock.

It is not “who I am” in any way.

It’s high time I stop giving it credit. I choose to share my passions, challenges, and achievements sought because of who I am rather than focusing solely on one specific experience.

[Promise me you will move on from here and stop obsessing over this point.]
I’ll move on from here and stop obsessing over this point.

This is not about what my life will be like when the fight is over.
I will never stop
I will never quit
This is my story

100% of the royalties earned from my books go to the National MS Society, to support our fight:

Never Stop… Never Quit…®
Kevin Byrne
Portland, OR

Never Stop… Never Quit… Reg. U.S. Pat. & Tm. Off.