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Freshly squeezed orange juice is amazing. I prefer no pulp. However, for much of my life, I didn't know such juice existed; my family made orange juice from the "from concentrate" can.

It's one of those - if you know, you know - type things.

If you are reading this, odds are that you saw my KEEP ON FIGHTING video. This video is like a can of orange juice concentrate. Not in the sense that it is sub-par! A can of orange juice concentrate is only 12 ounces but it makes 36 ounces of orange juice just by adding water. All 36 ounces of flavor are condensed and jammed into a 12 ounce can. In the same way, the KEEP ON FIGHTING video is a lifetime of experience condensed into 2 minutes.

I decided to start this blog because KEEP ON FIGHTING is more than a two-minute spoken word poem; it is a lifestyle. When I was diagnosed with Friedreich's Ataxia I was told that I will lose my ability to walk and to communicate clearly. This was a chance to give up. Give up on music. Give up on spoken word poetry. Give up on coaching. Give up on mentoring teens. Give up on life in general. Give up on God. I decided to keep on fighting.

I don't think that I am special or that I have done anything extraordinary. I do know, however, that my decision to keep on fighting has allowed my pain to have a purpose. The trials that I face on a daily basis have served as a platform to inspire and encourage others.

We all have something that we are fighting. Maybe you lost a loved one. Didn't make the team. Have a difficult diagnosis. Lost your job. Got injured. Come from a broken home. The list goes on and on. The situations are different, but the dilemma is the same: will you quit, or will you keep on fighting?


You can KEEP ON FIGHTING rare disease by clicking here to get 20% off your KEEP ON FIGHTING hoodie or t-shirt.

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Carol Calfee
Carol Calfee
Apr 14, 2021

Jake, I found your blog on WIX by accident, but I think it wasn’t an accident at all! It seems like I always find what I need at the time that I need it. Have you ever felt that way? I have, what I think is, spinocerebellar ataxia-SCA for short. I say that because I was diagnosed 11 years ago. At the point of my diagnosis, I was told that I would end up in a wheelchair and on a respirator. 11 years later...I am still walking (with pain), I love to talk, and my oxygen level stays above 90. I do struggle with memory and organ failure. I have had 15 surgeries. UGG. I say all this not to complain…


Patricia Gunderson
Patricia Gunderson
Sep 05, 2020

Jake, that was inspiring, thanks. BTW the pulp makes the orange juice a healthier drink :- )

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