Saturday, July 28, 2012

An Olympic Challenge

Yesterday marked a momentous occasion.

I'm not talking about the beginning of the XXX Olympiad.

I'm referring to the last day of my steroid taper.

I am DONE with steroids!*

Praise God for helping me through this time on steroids and during the very difficult tapering process. And many, many thanks to family and friends for helping me on the days when the tapering rendered me unable to care for myself, and for putting up with my moodiness when the steroids made me grouchy or emotional. Steroids and the subsequent tapering process are challenges of Olympic proportions, and I'm very blessed to have crossed the finish line... at least for this particular event!

This photo is of Wilma Rudolph, a US sprinter and gold medal winner and Olympic record holder. In 1960, she became was the first US woman to win 3 gold medals at one Olympic Games. She has always amazed me, because she spent most of her childhood in bed with various illnesses. Her left leg became crippled when she contracted polio. At age 6, she was fitted with metal braces so she could walk. And yet, somehow... she pushed through all of this, and began to not just walk, but run.... and run very, very fast. Her incredible story inspires me to never give up, no matter what obstacles are in the way.

*Of course, the caveat here is that doctors tell me I will never really be off steroids. Due to my adrenal insufficiency, I'll remain dependent on two different steroids, taken several times a day, for the rest of my life. These steroids, however, are taken at "physiologic" doses (just replacing what my body needs to function, but is no longer able to make), not "therapeutic" doses (doses in excess of what is needed to function, used to dramatically cut inflammation and lower the immune system). So I'm not really counting them. ;) And after thinking about Wilma's life... maybe I WON'T have to take the 'roids forever!

Hannah ;)

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