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Nov Ivana  Before getting involved with Muscular Dystrophy Canada, I spent a year volunteering with the Canadian Cancer Society. I have heard stories, and met individuals that have truly inspired me to push, and fight harder. Just like MD, cancer has many problems with no solutions; answers, but no short cuts. There are a lot times where you find yourself frustrated, and emotionally challenged. There seems to be too many obstacles to overcome, bridges to build, and barriers can be found around every corner – but sometimes within the midst of all that, you find something that makes it all worth it.

The world has proven itself to be full of unexpected twists, and turns. What is important is that we never stop believing, and we never forget the things that are worth holding onto. Mastin Kipp said it the best, “Being of service, and taking the wounds of your life and turning them into lessons, and sharing your experience with others will do more good to you and the world than almost anything else.” I have learned that having an illness is in no way a weakness or means that I am failing. You want to know the biggest reason people fail? The biggest reason goals don’t get accomplished? It is not because they aren’t smart enough, or pretty enough, or strong enough – it is because people make excuses, and sometimes they don’t even start to try. Sometimes you start, but then you just stop. Distractions get in the way, and one day becomes one week, and then one week becomes one month, then a year… then before you know it your life has gone by. There are endless opportunities, and rather than taking them, we like to stay comfortable. Can I blame you? Who doesn’t like being comfortable? Being uncomfortable causes us to feel nervous and anxious, however, being comfortable means you’re not reaching your highest potential.

After taking that year with the Canadian Cancer Society, learning everything I could, I felt like I had a fighting chance for the first time to battle my own illness. I saw what drives people, what pushes them, what inspires them, and what gets them involved. The answer is not sitting back, and expecting results to happen. I have no idea where I will go with creating awareness or fundraising for LGMD2A, but I believe I found my first step. Coalition for Calpain 3 is an organization founded in 2010 and its purpose is to find a cure for LGMD2A. Both founders have this progressive disease, and share the same goal as I do in ending this disease. If you want to check it out please use this link: (http://www.curecalpain3.org/). Use your resources, and most importantly, use your potential. If we want to see an end to this disease, it starts with us.

We can’t plan everything that happens in life. We win some, and we lose some. That is just the way it goes. As I sit here I hope my words empower you to not stay in the state of suffering if you are. I know life isn’t fair sometimes, but you must risk failure, you must risk losing, you must risk everything all your life if you want to achieve anything. LGMD2A is one of the easiest MD to cure, and this fact alone makes me believe that if we all do something, progress will happen. I believe that we all have to step up, and do something about this disease not just for ourselves, but also for each other. If we all helped to create something, amazing things can happen. I hope after reading this you donate your time, efforts, and energy towards a cause much greater than yourself. I hope you create a powerful message to the world, and I hope whenever you find what you are looking for, you live within it.

You can dream as big as you want. There are so many quotes I come across on a daily basis about dreaming big, and doing what you are afraid of. No, I do not mean saying hello to that big spider on the floor kind of doing what you are afraid of – I am talking about being afraid of the possibility of failure, and even the possibility of success. The fear of trying.

This is me pushing you, this is saying that you have the potential to turn your life around. Here is your chance. Individuals who are the best at what they do are the ones who have gone out of their way to do more than what is required of them. Maybe that means getting up, and working towards your goal(s) while everyone else is still sleeping. Maybe that means feeling short term pain for long term gain. Maybe it means standing tall when everyone else is laughing, and telling you it isn’t possible. There are reachable goals out there, pursue them. What you are going to do each and every day is what makes your year, your being, and your life. What you do does matter. Your life is your life. All I ask is that you make the most of it, that you create your own path and that you enjoy every second.

“When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds: Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great, and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be.”         - Patanjali

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Ivana was born in Sanski Most, Bosnia & Herzegovina, but moved to Canada at the age of three. She was diagnosed with LGMD a few years ago, and it has forever changed her life/ She is a regular contributor, and her blogs will be everything she has learned along the way, and what she continues to learn today.

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