“Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside of you that is greater than any obstacle.” – Christian D. Larson
It’s hard to believe how fast everything can change.
Sometimes, it only takes an instant. In 2011, four simple words destroyed my world completely: “You have Meniere’s disease.” For better or worse, those four words changed everything.
Real, explosive, life-altering change doesn’t happen too often, but when it does, nothing can prepare you for the violent transition you will have to face as a new reality is forced upon your consciousness.
My Meniere’s disease diagnosis was no exception. And for a long time, I fought through a whirlwind of chaos, confusion, and despair. I thought my life over… But slowly, and with the help of better doctors, I found my way back from the brink. I carefully put the pieces of my life back together, and for the next few years, my life chugged a long at a comfortable pace.
Today, however, I find myself in the middle of another whirlwind of change. Only this time, my world didn’t fall apart. This time, things changed for the better.
“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.” – Joseph Campbell.
2015 was an incredible year for me. My best by far since my diagnosis, and one that gives me tremendous hope for the future.
I wanted to take a few moments to reflect back on the things I did right, the things I did wrong, the lessons I learned, and my plans for the future.
2015 A Year in Review:
Back in January, I felt like my life had started to stagnate.
I followed a rigid routine, and while it helped to manage my Meniere’s symptoms, I was ready for a change. I was looking for a change. But I never would have guessed what was coming.
And it all can be traced back to a single moment in late January, lying in bed struggling to fall asleep.
I had toyed with the idea of starting to write again in some capacity, but never very seriously, and without any clear direction. But as I tossed and turned, it hit me like a ton of bricks: Meniere’s disease! I could write about Meniere’s disease.
My mind raced back to the first year after my diagnosis. Memories flashed like fireworks. All of the suffering, all of the despair, and for what? I eventually learned to manage my symptoms, but at the time, I didn’t even know it was possible. It was an informational problem. There is hope for people with this crazy illness, but it was desperately lacking on the internet.
I suddenly had the feeling that I wasn’t alone, that there must be countless others going through the same things that I had gone through. “Just maybe”, I thought, “I could help someone. Maybe I know enough to write about Meniere’s disease.”
In that moment, the seed of Mind over Meniere’s was planted, and my life began to change.
“That is all I want in life: for this pain to seem purposeful.” ―Elizabeth Wurtzel
The next day I started to plan and by the end of the following week, the blog was live. I had never written a blog or built a website, but I figured it out, and as I started to share my writing with the world, I watched in amazement as my audience grew.
At some point, the idea of a writing a book began to stick in my mind like a rock in my shoe. It seemed impossible, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that it was something I needed to do. So I got to work.
Writing a book was a long, grueling, though surprisingly rewarding experience. I made sure to work on it for a little while, every single day, and after several months, I was shocked to find a finished manuscript. I had a long way to go, but it felt like I had climbed a mountain.
On September 1st 2015, I was finally ready to self publish, and my first book, “Mind Over Meniere’s: How I Conquered Meniere’s disease and Learned to Thrive”, was out for the world to see.
It was terrifying. I had never felt so vulnerable. I felt like I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.
But the negativity I expected never came. I watched in amazement as Mind Over Meniere’s shot to number 1 in multiple categories across Amazon.
And it’s only grown from there. Today, Mind Over Meniere’s is the number one search result for Meniere’s disease on Amazon, and I couldn’t be more proud. But I also couldn’t have done it without all of you. I learn so much from all of you.
If this was all that happened in 2015, it would have been enough, but as many of you know, I also got married to a wonderful woman, and had an incredible honeymoon in Europe.
I truly believe that when I am an old man, I am going to look back on my life and know that 2015 was the year that my life took on a new direction.
It’s the last day of a wonderful year, and I could not be more grateful.
Mind Over Meniere’s Most Popular Content of 2015:
Why Hasn’t anyone heard of Meniere’s disease – Over 15,000 people from around the world have seen this post, and it has been shared thousands of times across social media. It was my most shared piece by far.
Meniere’s disease: Take a Dizzying walk in my shoes – It’s always been hard for my friends and family to understand what I was going through, and I know many of you have felt the same. I wrote this piece to shed light on what it’s really like to suffer from Meniere’s disease.
The 5 Caregiver Commandments: How to Support a Loved one with Invisible Illness – Having Meniere’s disease is hard but so is taking care of someone with Meniere’s disease. I wrote this to help bridge the divide. This is my personal favorite of everything I’ve written, and the post that I am most proud of.
Meniere’s disease: A Tale of Risk, Regret, and Redemption – Sometimes it’s better to face your fear, and live life on your terms, regardless of the consequences, than to live with regret. I lived with the fear of vertigo and endless regrets of missed opportunities, for a long time. This is the story of how I faced my fear one afternoon.
The Mind Over Meniere’s Symptom Trigger Tool – Finding your triggers is a big part of learning to manage your Meniere’s symptoms. But it’s incredibly hard to make the connection between how you feel and your environment without keeping track. I created this free journal template tool to help you find your triggers and start getting better.
Mind Over Meniere’s: How I Conquered Meniere’s Disease and Learned to Thrive – The official Mind Over Meniere’s book. I share my story, my struggles, my successes, and offer a complete system to get you on the path to heath. Join the thousands of others who have made this book an Amazon #1 Best Seller!
The Meniere’s Disease Symptom Relief Project – What started as a hunch quickly has evolved in to a powerful tool for finding relief. The Symptom Relief Project uses brainwave training audio to quickly change your mental state and help you find relief from some of your worst symptoms.
My New Years Resolutions:
- New directions for the blog – As Mind Over Meniere’s is nearly a year old, I plan to expand the blog in several exciting new ways. One which will be to feature other writers. If you would be interested in writing for Mind Over Meniere’s, feel free to reach out and let me know at Glenn@Mindovermenieres.com.
- Finish my next book – I haven’t written about this publicly, but I am about half way finished writing my next book about brain fog and chronic illness. I started writing it shortly after Mind Over Meniere’s was released, but had put it on hold to focus on my wedding and creating the Symptom Relief Project. I plan to self publish it in 2016!
- Continue to develop new products and tools to help people with Meniere’s disease
- Continue to work on new exciting initiatives for the Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA)
I encourage everyone else to create a list of your new year’s resolutions too! Remember that no matter how your life is going, there is always room for improvement. Maybe you can improve your diet, or start exercising more. Maybe you would like to start meditating, or start vestibular rehabilitation therapy. What ever your goals are, aim to be 1% better every day.
I wish you all a happy spin-free new year!
And STAY TUNED for a great post next week. There is exciting new Meniere’s disease research happening right now, and this time around, you can get involved. Together we can find a cure!
Also be sure to check out the brand new Mind Over Meniere’s Curated Amazon Store. It’s a carefully selected list of products, supplements, and foods, all beneficial to anyone suffering from Meniere’s disease and all available on Amazon.