Small Girl with Parkinson’s writes a poem, then wonders ~ How do you survive your storms?

~ Meg Bernard; SGwP

Do you have a storm?

It may sound like rhetorical question; and now that I stop and think about it, you’re absolutely right, it is; so feel free not to answer that one as I am confident that we all have what could, metaphorically, be called ‘a storm’ as not one of us is immune to the pressures and plot twists of life. I shall therefore change my question slightly…

How do you survive your storms?

*Sidenote* It’s quite possible that some of you are thinking “umm…Small Girl…wasn’t it just this past spring that you went on and on about your love for thunderstorms and how you dance with the rain etc etc…so what’s with this ‘surviving a storm’ thing?” A very good question dear friends and with it a very good answer; I like REAL thunderstorms, you know, the ones that actually get me wet; the ones that live in my head? Well…not quite so much.

So here we all sit, facing our storms. Can’t go over them, can’t go under them, can’t go around them…straight through them it is.

To answer to my own question; as a singer, a songwriter, a lyricist, a writer and a lover of words; there are times when I find that some of my thoughts are best expressed in the form of a poem. I ask for your indulgence as I do just that.


“Where once was light, in darkness, gone
What once I knew, forgotten, wrong
That place, with soaring wings once flown
Now lay concealed, a thing unknown

“With every heartbeat torn and tossed
With every effort given, lost
When misery enslaved my mind
In that dark moment I did find

“A spark, from embers deep inside
Behind the broken parts did hide
And with each breath I felt begin
That single spark catch fire within

“When all around me shattered; broke
The fire inside, new life awoke
Then, fueled on by the fight I give
It’s in my storm I learned to live

“Courage in my veins; it flows
The strength inside, like lightening, grows
With whispered prayer, I face my fight
My fire, glowing, stronger, bright

“Moving forward; leave my past
What fire creates is built to last
The life I lost, I will not mourn
Bring on the rain, I’ll take the storm”

How do you survive your storms?

Much love ~ Meg




Are your doctor’s scared of you yet?

By Meg Bernard, SGwP

IT’S OFFICIAL! As of this past Monday I have had 7 emergency J-tube exchanges in 10 weeks; 4 of these took place just a day apart. This realization has me skipping down supermarket isles, giving high-fives to all the shoppers I pass who are, of course, just as thrilled as I am; the supermarket, most definitely, being the first place you would expect find a girl, who can’t eat food, when she’s celebrating.

So, while singing along to Lesley Gore’s “Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows”; shaking pom-poms; and doing high kicks; I’ve let my mind wander to hospital visits gone by….whether the visit is planned, or I’m racing full speed to the emergency room, there is a vision that never fails to lazily swim to the forefront of my mind….

It begins with Dr. Joe (I couldn’t use Dr. Smith, as natural reflex would demand, because he exists in the form of my brother-in-law). Dr. Joe; straightening a sparkling white lab coat and pouring that first cup of coffee; greets colleagues with a Colgate smile and a casual ‘hey there’ as they walk by.

Having had a decent nights sleep; with The Carpenters ‘Top of the World’, number one hit from 1973, playing on that ‘continuous repeat’ cycle in the back of his mind; with a distinct ‘spring’ in each step and a decidedly ‘can do’ feeling in the air; Dr. Joe is certain that nothing could ruin this ‘feel good’ moment!

*Enter Nurse Jenny*

Biting her bottom lip, and with a quivering hand, she gives Dr. Joe a tentative tap on the shoulder, “Dr. Joe?” she says in a quiet voice, “I need to talk to you about a change in today’s schedule”. With smile intact, ready to wish nurse Jenny a cheerful “good morning!!” Dr. Joe spins around. Upon seeing the look of terror in nurse Jenny’s eyes, said smile is immediately replaced with a wild look; one which bears a remarkable resemblance to ‘deer caught in headlights’; Dr. Joe’s cheerful words are immediately replaced by,”please don’t tell me….” to which nurse Jenny replies “Yes, Dr. Joe, it’s Meg…”

The scene that follows this moment in my mind cannot be put into words, so for your enjoyment I will let pictures “do the talking”.

First there is…


Followed closely by…


And likely ending with…


Despite the image this ‘witty dramatization” may bring to your mind  regarding my history as a patient, I would like to point out “IT’S NOT MY FAULT!” Nor is it the fault of any of my doctors who; if all else failed; would go so far as to hold my Jtube in with Duct Tape or super glue if possible. I’m certain I would have been given the world’s largest ‘gold star’ if these things were based solely on effort. But many, many, moons ago we all came to the realization, that if something CAN go wrong; when it comes MEG; it typically WILL go wrong (no ‘ish’ about it). Hey, a body doesn’t earn the title of anomaly, enigma, and beautifully misunderstood by being super easy to work with; this takes natural talent!

But with all this ‘talent’; the pain, nausea, frustration, tired eyes, sleepless nights, and very tear stained cheeks; comes the question “will this be my last time?” And whether it is or isn’t “how will I choose to live today?” After countless days of intense pain from both Parkinson’s and a feeding tube that refuses to stay put; after countless days of wretched, constant nausea and dry heaving; after countless days of forcing medication  via J-tube, knowing that this particular tube could last me a day or (I can only pray) a few weeks; I ask myself again “how will I choose to live today?” The beauty of the answer? This is the one thing, the ONLY thing that I actually get to decide.

It’s on days like this that I often recall these famous words, written by Robert Frost…

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”

Remember my dear friends; live with no regrets; have courage and be kind; refuse to live each day like it could be your last, live like you are living and enjoy each breath!

Much love from The Small Girl ~ Meg

~ Sending eternal gratitude to those doctors who I owe every day of my life to; thank you for the gift of borrowed time ~

Questions from the Small Girl ~ How are you feeling?

~ by Meg Bernard ~ Small Girl with Parkinson’s

I have a station set up in my bathroom where I have all the tools I need in order to sit and crush up all of the various medications I take to help treat the symptoms of my Parkinson’s disease; or any other medications I may be needing to take at any given time. I mix these crushed medications with water, turning them into suspensions which can then, via syringe, be injected into my intestinal feeding tube. It has to be done carefully and properly and it has a tendency to be slightly time consuming, yet I am grateful for this life-saving gift.

I keep the area I work in tidy, clean and organized; it reduces the risk of a mistake and it makes my job a lot easier; BUT there is one thing that I always do that tends to make my space look slightly more chaotic than functional…

You see, I learned early on in my ‘tube feeding career’ that spills happen often, and I discovered that blue dry-back dental bibs work as a perfect cover for my workspace! Each day I pull out a new one and place my tools on top of it, tidy and ready for use. BUT, I also learned something else about the blue dry-back dental bibs; they are PERFECT for writing on!! It is on these dental bibs that my chaos is created; I can’t help but write down my thoughts, appointment reminders, items that need to be purchased, questions that come to mind or things I simply want to learn more about. As each bib becomes covered in words, it also becomes my version of a masterpiece.

A few days ago, as I was letting my mind wander, I scribbled down a thought; a combination of questions actually; on my dental bib, and as I stared at the words in front of me I realized that I wasn’t sure of the answer. Perhaps I could make up an answer or two; something generic and ‘all purpose’; but ultimately, seeing as I couldn’t genuinely answer the questions when I asked them of myself, how could I, in honesty, answer them if they were asked of me by a friend or acquaintance. These are questions that have plagued me for years and I have a feeling that many of you may feel the same way.

I took a picture of the words on this particular ‘dental bib’ and decided to share the photo with you. Perhaps if we work together we can come up with an answer; or perhaps there is no answer; in which case at least we have the comfort of remembering that we are not alone…we’re all in this together…

Much Love ~ Meg; SGwPD





Rantings of a Small girl with Parkinson’s ~ Hospital Edition

~ Meg Bernard; Small girl with Parkinson’s.

Allow me to set the stage for the telling of my ‘true life’ story ~ October 26, 2015; the early hours before dawn; a 4th floor room, on a Neurology unit, in a hospital; my hospital; BUT, it could, just as easily, be a hospital in your city….


It is 4 o’clock in the morning, I’m in the hospital…again. It’s impossible to doubt; this has been one of the most challenging experiences of my life; I can’t wait for it to end. This isn’t my first hospital stay; not by a long shot; but I’m determined it will be my last.

Today brought a new comer to the room I currently call home. She is 28 and living with MS, while I am 38 and living with YO Parkinson’s. Though our diseases are different, we have much in common; one thing being the frustration that comes from living with a disease that has so many invisible and ever changing pieces; easily overlooked and misunderstood by an uneducated observer; as well, our motor symptoms make us an easy target for those who live in ignorance of the world around them.

It was sad to discover that we have both experienced the largest degree of unkindness; judgement; criticism; disbelief and poor care; at the hands of people we thought we could trust the most…the nurses on the neurology units in the hospital.

** It is important that I immediately clarify that not all nurses and healthcare professionals fall into this category. I live in awe of the skill and empathy of so many in this profession. For those whom I owe my life; and for those who have; past, present and future; cared for myself and those I love, you have my eternal gratitude**

When admitted to a general neurology unit, it is common that I, at age 38, am the youngest patient. The majority of beds are filed with elderly stroke victims or those with serious head injuries; often making them incapable of being an advocate for their treatment, as well as their day to day needs .

ENTER MEG:  A young, cheerful, incurable optimist; who has a passion for life that cannot be dimmed. BUTshe is also a young woman trapped in a body that will not cooperate; living with a disease most expect to see in elderly people; a young woman who appears so small and harmless….

When suddenly, out of nowhere, WHOA! “JUMP BACK!” (shout out to ‘Footloose’)  

…”Are you telling me that this woman, with no medical background, actually expects; even demands; that she be an active participant in the ‘decision making process’ regarding her care? Who does she think she is?! It’s not like she has any experience”…

Oh, the stories I could tell you, my friends….

Pardon me? What’s that? You’re saying that you WANT me to share some of my “real life” with you? Well…since you asked so kindly…

My first story begins with something both mysterious and elusive; they call “Bedside rounds”. No no! It’s true! Just because you haven’t experienced it doesn’t mean it’s not there!

Legend tells us that “Bedside Rounds is a time for the nursing staff, coming on duty, AND for the patient to receive and share information regarding our care. Bedside Rounds can sometimes be a time for teaching residents and students. Bedside Rounds is a time of learning for everyone. And please be assured that your personal information will be kept strictly confidential.” So, you ask me, which part is elusive? BEDSIDE!! Please DO NOT stand outside my room, completely excluding me from the opportunity to learn and contribute to my care; which part is mysterious? Why are the rest of the patients on the unit hear all my private information while you discuss it in the hallway?…..B-E-D-S-I-D-E-!-! 

Now I will share with you the mythical tale of the “Parkinson ‘ON/OFF’ cycle”…apparently not proven and considered to be highly suspicious.

ON = meds working = improved control and mobility.

OFF = meds have reached the point of losing their effectiveness = loss of control over movement and often loss of independent mobility.


As a person with Young Onset with PD, it disgusts me to have overheard this conversation between nurses in regard to me,”She was moving fine and didn’t need assistance getting to the bathroom half an hour ago, so why does she need help now? She must be faking it”. I sat with clenched teeth desperately wanting to dare someone to say that to my face. Yet I brush it off…I had been warned that people wouldn’t understand; I just hadn’t thought it would be these people. This is why I brought a cane, a walker and a wheelchair with me when I came to the hospital. As my mobility varies, my method of transportation varies.

Which leads me to the time honored tale of “PARKINSON’S MEDS ON TIME”  which, apparently, got lost in translation. WHY can’t you accept that when I say that I can’t wait an extra 30 minutes for my medication that I mean  it? WHY don’t you see that I know what I’m talking about? WHY when I ‘heaven forbid’ take my own medication; this being the medication that I brought from home, the medication you don’t want me to have control over, the medication you will have to pry from my cold dead fingers to get your hands on so don’t even bother trying because I tend to bite; do you get so upset?  Would you want your ability to either move, or become a living statue, left at the mercy of a pushing red button; a call for help so often ignored? I can’t imagine you would.

Five years into my diagnosis I have grown a thicker skin; not caring  what is thought or said about me by people in everyday settings. But it is incredibly disheartening when the cruelest remarks come from ‘health care professionals’ who, instead of criticizing what they do not understand, should instead take a few minutes to look in a book (or google it!) so that a patient can be properly treated.

Even better suggestion; ask me to tell you about my disease; learn a bit about me instead of standing, within earshot of my door, complaining. My message for those of you who feel threatened because I know more about the disease that I live with everyday then you do, “be prepared, because I will “rain on your parade”.

Now, onto the thank you’s….

Thank you for adding to my stress; thereby making my symptoms worse.

Thank you for making light of the disease I am forced to fight every day by treating me, on occasion actually telling me, that I am the least important person on the unit and you will do your best to ‘get around to helping me’.

Thank you for putting into question my value as a human being by not assisting me in having the shower that I have been requesting for 4 days, thereby making it necessary for me to find a friend who was willing to drive to the hospital, pay for parking and then do your job…

…your job…the job you chose…the one you get paid to do…

After four days of asking, not one of you showed enough respect, enough decency, enough empathy or compassion to give what is considered a basic necessity. How sad.

Thank you for explaining to me that dry heaving isn’t vomiting; which means that it doesn’t hurt, isn’t anything of interest, isn’t a sign of any problem and therefore isn’t necessary to record…pause…this feels like the appropriate time to throw out a reminder; I have a feeding tube that goes straight into my intestines, bypassing my stomach; one cannot throw up what is not there. As a potential point of interest, I would rather throw up something than nothing. Dry heaving is incredibly painful and does not give any relief afterward, as ‘traditional’ vomiting would.

Thank you for standing right outside my door, laughing and gossiping about patients…

… She is alone; on her bed; pain wracking through her body, like a silent scream, as she attempts to mask the sound of her sobs. A river of, what could only be, never ending tears pour from her eyes as the reality of the news slowly begins to seep through the cracks in her mind; the ones she couldn’t seal quickly enough. Words play over and over in her head; shredding her heart as she grieves the loss of herself…myself…

…shamefully forgetting that you are surrounded by silent suffering. Surely there is a more suitable place for your fun.

More than once I have imagined what would happen if you agreed to step into my body for a mere 5 minutes. I can assure you, with full confidence, that in under a minute you would be begging and pleading to be released from the cage…

…cage…this cage…this cage which is my body…this body which is mine…the one I live in…everyday.

It is because this; no vacation, no weekends off, no leaving work to go home at the end of each day; that we, people with Parkinson’s, have been forced to become resilient; often silent; warriors. We have also learned a kind of empathy and compassion that we wouldn’t have discovered in any other way. Please let us show you and teach you what we have had to fight to learn, in order to become who we are.

It is now 5 o’clock. I’m feeling thankful for a sense of humour which is quietly giggling with glee as it plans some mischief to leave in its wake…every flashlight on the unit being hidden in an obscure location…. I wish you could see me smiling as I lie here imagining the mayhem; while I close my eyes and pray for sleep to find me.


I suppose I could end the scene there; allow you to draw your own conclusions; but what kind of advocate would I be if I didn’t clearly point out the moral of my story; the hard facts of my reality.

What it comes down to is this; I’m here to get well, not to win the ‘miss congeniality’ award. If that means that, by insisting on proper care, the staff don’t like me; I am willing to accept this.

The moral of my, true life, story turns out to be the opposite of a frequently used phrase; one that I despise and will never use; so listen closely. When it comes down to my life or my death; to being your friend or getting the care that I need; remember this…

“It’s NOT just business, it IS personal”.

~ Meg

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Five years with PD and counting ~ How do you celebrate?

~ Meg Bernard; Small Girl with Parkinson’s.

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015 was my 5th PD-versary; the 5th anniversary of the day I received my official diagnosis of Parkinson disease. Although I was 33 at the time, now that we know what we are looking for, my symptoms can be traced back as far as age 19.

My PD-versary is a special day that I celebrate, in private, every year…though, can I really call something private when I excitedly proclaim it to my children the moment I see them (or anyone else for that matter); while also making and wearing a glitter glue “announcement”; pinning to myself like a badge of honour?…perhaps the best I can do is call it “mostly private” (thank you “Princess Bride”).

Last year, one of my small/tall daughters asked me a very insightful question, “Mom, why do you celebrate sad things?” My explanation was simple…I am not celebrating the fact that I HAVE Parkinson’s; I am celebrating the fact that I LIVE with Parkinson’s.

By celebrating the passing of another year, I am choosing to celebrate the beautiful life I have decided to live…Parkinson’s just comes along for the ride. As I reflect on the year behind me; though, without doubt, one of the most challenging of my life; I can truly say that I have never been more grateful or felt so blessed.

“WE ARE ALL given the gift of a new day simply by waking up. It’s up to us to find a way to celebrate it, share it, and enhance it.
“Lift hearts, lift spirits, rise above, find joy and live! In many cases things haven’t turned out the way we planned…but I can’t get rid of this feeling that the best is yet to come!” ~ SGwPD

~ With much love….


It’s my Tube-iversary ~ Memories

~ Meg Bernard; Small Girl with Parkinson’s

Happy “tube-iversay” everyone!
November 28, 2015 marked the one year anniversary of the absence of all things swallowed; the insertion of my Jejunostomy feeding tube (it bypasses my stomach feeding directly into the second part of my small intestines). It feels like only weeks ago, yet also a lifetime ago.

**Sidebar** I have chosen not to mention; the green grape and red jujube that I, without thinking, popped into my mouth; as well as the 2 pieces of grape Bubblicious gum, which were accidentally swallowed. For, although it lead to the writing of highly amusing quips for my headstone should said incident bring about my demise; the winner being “she really blew it”; these incidents add so little to my reminiscence.

For your reading enjoyment/education, I will share this year’s top Q&A.

Q. Do you miss food?
A. No

Q. What are the BEST things about having a feeding tube?
1. I can eat while I sleep.
2. I’m never accused of talking with my mouth full.
3. Consuming the same thing every day (Peptamen 1.5) makes meal planning easy.
4. My nieces and nephews think that it’s either; super cool, or, it freaks them out. Both of which I find highly entertaining.
5. I am an inexpensive dining companion.

Q. What are the most challenging things about having a feeding tube?
1. The ‘social’ aspect of eating (I kinda stand out at dinner parties lol).
2. Regularly scheduled tube replacements (there is a ‘regular’ way for things to happen, and there is a ‘Meg’ way for things to happen; whole different ballgame)
3. Being attached to a ‘leash’ (aka my body being attached to a bag full of formula or water via tube) for up to 22 hours a day gets tedious YET also inspires creativity in all things ‘wardrobe’ related!!!

In trying to find the right words to tell you what this life changing thing has taught me and who it has helped me become, I found there were too many; therefore I leave you with this;

~366 days ago, I was ‘meg’.
~365 days ago I began the journey, the battle and the collecting of joy, which make me; the ‘work in progress’; woman you know today, ‘Meg’.

“It is in the fight for life, that I continue to discover my true value; and it was in the realization of my own insignificance, that I learned my true worth.” (~SGwPD)



The Dragon ~ Does your Parkinson’s have a name?

~ Meg Bernard ~ small girl with Parkinson’s

My PD lives as a separate entity from myself. He holds a human form, black and faceless. He calls himself the dragon, for that is what he is; dangerous and strong; but so am I.
Neither can help but respect the strength and fortitude of the other; for we know each other better than any other pair in existence; because we live the same life.
Each day begins as though we are fencing. We stand and face each other; give a slight bow; and then begin.
Ultimately we both know who will win; I know it; he knows it. Yet the dragon puts all he has into this daily battle, and by doing so, forces me to do the same. The fear and fight required are real. This invisible demon is as tangible to me as friend. There is no easy way out. Everyday, we fight to the end.
Yet, it is because of this that I owe a degree of gratitude to my nemesis. In the end it is how hard I had to fight that has created this person that I am proud to be. Yes, a person with war wounds and battle scars; a person exhausted and desperate for sleep at the end of every day; but always a person stronger than the day before. For this, I thank him.
The Dragon

The Dragon ~ Black and faceless; we stand and face each other; give a slight bow; and then begin.



Dearest readers…

A funny thing happened upon my return from the magical land of all things Disney.

PD decided to have a diva moment, which required more than one hospital stay.

Due to this detour I will not be sharing the results of the magical trip yet, instead I will share what I learned about hospitals and also what I learned about myself.

I hope you will forgive the delay and enjoy what came next…

Much love, Meg











She’s Leaving on a Jet Plane ~ Parkinson’s pre-vacation jitters?

Watch out Orlando! Here comes Meg!!

All my bags are packed, I'm ready to go...

All my bags are packed, I’m ready to go…

This “Small girl with Parkinson’s”…plus an entourage of people who are all officially taller than her, are heading to Orlando Florida, where yes, we will do everything Disney and Universal (Harry Potter world!! Woohoo! I’m a ‘not so closet Potter fan’) and hopefully sleep. Phew!

But in true ‘Small girl’ style, I have also decided to make this trip something of an experiment….

Small girl’s last trip to Orlando was before my diagnosis of Parkinson disease, when symptoms were just beginning to show…what challenges will show themselves now that my disease has substantially progressed? Hmmmm…

***I wrote this blog a few days ago. So this paragraph was added today***

***Due to unforeseen complications. Small girl had emergency surgery yesterday due to serious complications with her feeding tube…BUT with true “Small girl” determination I am on the road, as I write this, heading to an airport 3 hours south…(and because I don’t want to get scolded, I choose to plead the 5th and not disclose how I’m feeling right now…) WiIl this unexpected ‘twist in the road’, which affects my PD, change the outcome of said trip? Hmmmm….***

Also, Small/tall children are now all teenagers, granted they are delightful teenagers, yet one with autism and 2 with serious medical conditions…than add teenage hormones into mix? Hmmmm….

And then there is ‘Beastie’ (Small girl’s kitty). Last time I was away for a few days, I had to FaceTime Beastie in order to get him to eat, drink and sleep. Yes, I actually had a FaceTime session with my cat. Don’t laugh! Will this separation anxiety create a challenge for both girl and cat? Hmmmm……

Also, now this is a very serious possibility…Will “Small girl with Parkinson’s” ever return? Or will she remain forever in the Magic Kingdom; a place where spontaneously bursting into song is not seen as an oddity but is instead encouraged!!! Hmmmm…

But more than anything this is to test Small girl’s ability to travel. For example, try crossing the border with 27 boxes of formula; my only food; which must fly as carry on luggage. As each box is 8 ounces, an amount greater than the accepted 4 ounces, well, can anyone say ‘customs nightmare?’ hmmmm….

I’m genuinely curious to see how the next few weeks play out, and then I’m excited to share the outcome with you. I’m promising many, many laughs, some travel advice, and I wouldn’t be surprised if a few tears of frustration enter the mix. But hey, nothing wrong with that!

It’s gonna be a blast!!!!

Much love,
~ Meg, Small girl with Parkinson’s

Finding Your Fight ~ Did you know it was missing?

What is this feeling?

I felt differently than I had a few weeks ago, but I couldn’t put a name to it; a foreign thing; some strange entity that at times had a paralyzing effect and at other times had me in a state of mind that wouldn’t allow me to hold still.

Then, as is often the case, from out of nowhere, came the moment of clarity. A name for this killer of spirits. Somehow this clever, treacherous adversary had, with unnerving ease, crept into my mind during one of my more vulnerable moments. It was fear.

This wasn’t the first time that my fight, the armor I surround myself with, had been checked for weak points of entry; that doubt had tried to take root in my mind saying, “You can’t handle this. You won’t make it through the challenges being thrown at you”. But this time was unique. This time was the first time those piercingly whispered words of doubt had finally penetrated my armor; my fight; causing me to wonder if I was wrong.

I believe that I play a strong role in deciding my future. On many occasions I have faced the choice; a few times the ultimate choice; to give up or to fight and keep going. And because I have such a firm knowledge that I have purpose in this world; have much left to do; have people who need me, especially my children; I have always put everything that is in me to keep moving forward and have known with certainty that I could. So how had fear snuck it?

What a horrible, disgusting experience it is; feeling stuck in a space where one’s core beliefs are being constantly tested. I have been afraid before; I wouldn’t be human otherwise, but this was new. I was standing face to face with something that showed no mercy. An endless, wordless, darkness; and I didn’t like it. So I decided to ignore it; pretend it wasn’t there; it would just go away. Then one day I felt it; realized that hiding was actually making me weaker by the moment. Fear, not I, was winning, and the only way for me to defeat this creature was to shine a light on it; force it out of its dark corner, so that I could see what I was up against; only then could I fight back.

I recalled the words of Frank Herbert, “I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” So I reached inside myself; held this fear in my hands; looked at it from all angles, and finally recognized it for what it was. It, not I, was small; it, not I, was weak. I told this fear that it would not own me; that it could not win; that it held no power over me; then I sent it away.

I know now, the only way fear could have won is if I had decided that the outcome was hopeless and chosen not to fight at all. It is only by facing our opponent that we can avoid further attacks and truly defeat that which threatens us. We never lose our ability to fight unless we choose to. It remains inside us, only sometimes it is overshadowed by something that pretends to be bigger and stronger.

The moment fear fled, I took a long life-giving breath and a deep sigh of relief. I felt my fight stand up, smile, then begin to shine; bigger, brighter, and stronger than ever before.

~ Meg Bernard

If you know the enemy and know youself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles. ~Sun Tzu

If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles. ~Sun Tzu