• Reality vs. Positivity: Can You Have Both?

  • As Ronda began her journey, we talked a lot about being positive. Heck, this whole website is centered around positivity and most of you hold a copy of my ebook where the very topic is just that.

    So, as I update you today on the next step in Ronda’s journey, you might ask yourself, “Where’s the positivity?” You may question if there is a silver lining or even we (The Dix Family) were a little too positive, a little too hopeful in the beginning…

    It is with a heavy heart that I let you know that we have decided as a family, with Ronda’s input, to move Ronda to an inpatient hospice facility.

    As my dad, Larry, informs in his recent Facebook post, “By electing hospice care, Ronda has decided not to go through anymore procedures related to the glioblastoma multiforme diagnosis. Ronda has chosen to enjoy the rest of her life as pain free as possible. Given this decision Ronda will not be receiving any additional chemotherapy or any medication that will directly attempt to attack the brain cancer.”

    This decision was not made lightly.

    …and in typical Dix Family fashion, we held several “family meetings” to discuss our options and determine what is best for Ronda.

    I have had this conversation with many people recently about the how remaining positive does not mean that you disregard reality. I describe it like this…

    Think of reality and positivity as driving down the interstate (a metaphor so many of us can relate to growing up in Nebraska and making the trek down I-80)… POSITIVITY is the right lane, while REALITY is the left lane.

    So, you are driving in the right lane. Life is awesome, you have the music blaring, you are singing and you are getting to your destination! Suddenly, you come up on a semi-truck who is going less than your desired speed. The semi-truck represents an obstacle in life (in this case, Ronda’s diagnosis of brain cancer).

    Now you are forced to make a decision, do you slow down and stay in the positivity lane, or do you pass the semi entering into the reality lane? Ultimately, if you want to pass this semi, the obstacle, you have to move into the reality lane before you can come back to the positivity lane.

    Of course, you could just slow down and remain driving in the positivity lane, but that is not going to do you any good as eventually you are going to get frustrated and upset that the semi, the obstacle, is not going away.

    The alternative is, of course, that you can only drive in the left lane, the reality lane, but others are going to get frustrated with you, honking as they pass you on the right, and eventually, you are going to get the hint and eventually CHOOSE to move over to the right lane, the positivity lane.

    You see, it is unhealthy to only drive in ONE lane the entire time. If you only stay in the reality lane, you miss opportunities to be positive, and have hope. If you only stay in the positivity lane, you are not being realistic.

    Just in life, when you approach an obstacle, you must accept reality and then CHOOSE positivity.

    I believe that not only has Ronda done this AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN in her life, but as a family, we have chosen both lanes. For some of us, it took more time than others to finally pass that semi, but eventually, we all did.

    So, someone asked me the other day, “So what’s the silver lining now Miss Positivity?” (They didn’t mean it to be rude, just simply pointing out the grim situation). To which, I will answer this…

    “Positivity is still a choice! Sure reality says that my mom is dying, but I say … we still get time with her. We still get to choose to make memories. We still get to ask all of the questions we have ever wanted to ask. We still get to see this woman impact lives no matter what stage of life she is in. We still get to hug her. We still get to tell her we love her.”

    You see, we ALL have the same outcome in life. I joke a lot saying, “One thing is for certain … none of us are leaving this Earth alive, unless of course you move to Mars!” It’s how we choose to live our moments here on Earth that will impact those around us.

    So, I will ask you this … when you approach a semi on the interstate, do you choose to pass them and just hang out in the left lane (the Reality Lane) frustrating the other drivers? Or, do you make a choice to approach the obstacle, drive in the Reality Lane to pass the obstacle so you can quickly return to the Positivity Lane.

    I know what my mom’s choice would be. What is yours?