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Live the Poetry of Your Life Every Day

How a devastating illness inspired one man to get creative and embrace positive change.

Working on a website that focuses on faith, hope and inspiration, I read many uplifting stories every week. But sometimes a story lodges itself in my consciousness; it hovers around me like a hummingbird, its message touching a deep chord.

This week our senior editor Alina Larson wrote about Stephen Guy, an Orcas Island resident, who had been journaling for years until MS made it impossible for him to hold a pen. At a friend’s request, he began to pare down his journal entries into their essence, ultimately writing them as stanzas, like a poem. Suddenly he caught the poetry muse and this year published his first book of poems.

What stays with me is how, because of his illness, he found a deeply satisfying calling, how he turned the lemon of his life (MS) into lemonade. When a devastating life event occurs—loss, divorce, serious health issues—we are often urged by friends and family members to “look for the silver lining,” or told that good will come of it. I’m sure people diagnosed with MS or cancer, those who have to rebuild their lives after catastrophes like Katrina or the Japanese tsunami, cringe at such talk. And yet…Stephen Guy is proof that a devastating illness can, in fact, bring not only positive change and personal growth but blessings beyond our wildest imaginings.

We need to thank the Stephen Guys of the world for reminding us that we can indeed “live the poetry of our lives every day.”

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