Encouraging Quotes from 5 Famous People

Everyone has bad days. Everyone feels like giving up sometimes. People with IBD are no exception and often have more bad days and feel like giving up more often than the average person. At some point during the course of our diseases, we will all need encouragement. It’s times like these, that I like to find encouraging quotes to help keep me going.

Encouraging quotes to keep me going

“In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” ~Albert Einstein
In the last 39 years of his life, Albert Einstein faced many health issues related to his digestive tract. He dedicated his life to science and despite his various ailments, he continued pressing on anyway... it is said that he worked until the very moment that he died. An interesting fact that I discovered in my J-Pouch research recently is that Dr. Rudolf Nissen once operated on Einstein to repair internal cysts! Dr. Rudolf Nissen was the man who first attempted an ileal-anal reservoir which eventually led to the construction of the first J-Pouch.

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.” ~Helen Keller
In my opinion, Helen Keller is one of the most inspirational women in history. At 19 months old, Keller developed a severe illness that left her both deaf and blind. Despite her trials and suffering, she was a very accomplished woman. She not only learned how to speak, but she became a world-famous speaker and advocate for people with disabilities.

The importance of empathy during hard times

“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.” ~C.S. Lewis
C. S. Lewis is another inspiration of mine. At a young age, Lewis experienced trials when his mother died of cancer. He remained single for most of his life and then he met a woman named Joy Davidson who he became friends with (who had a similar background story) and eventually developed feelings for. They were married in 1957 while she was very ill and she died three years later. Lewis knew his share of hardships and wrote about it in his book The Problem of Pain. He understood the importance of empathy. It’s something I have found to be key in my life for coping with hard times. We all need support. We all need to be understood. And the best friendships are made when you find someone who can not only sympathize, but empathize, too.

Chronic illness is not an end to your career or life

“Life delivered me a catastrophe, but I found a richness of soul.” ~Michael J. Fox
We all know Michael J. Fox very well. Back to the Future has become a cult classic so you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who has never seen the movies. Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1992, and in 1998 he went public with his illness.

“One’s dignity may be assaulted, vandalized and cruelly mocked, but cannot be taken away unless it is surrendered.” ~Michael J. Fox
He’s another one of my inspirations. Fox has proven that a chronic illness does not put an end to your career or your life.

“I see possibilities in everything. For everything that’s taken away, something of greater value has been given.” ~Michael J. Fox
Out of his disease, he discovered his strength. He’s become a fierce advocate for others who are dealing with Parkinson’s disease.

Keep fighting

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt
Last, but definitely not least, I would like to look at this quote from Eleanor Roosevelt. This is possibly the number one quote that has helped me during my difficulties. She is right in saying that we gain so much when we look fear in the face and press on anyway. We must keep going and doing the hard things. When everything else looks bleak, we can always find the strength to keep fighting.

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