Writing has to become fluid again so I am posting to that end today. I’ll not think too deeply, review too carefully, or critique too harshly. Instead, my thoughts will flow from fingertips to computer keys to the word document that I’ll then simply load to my site. Like a stream, easy.
A friend, whose kindness brought me to tears yesterday, shared a powerful analogy. Once, his pain was great. He cried a river! Eventually, however, that river carried him onward, he told me. His story struck a chord and later I realised I’ve not cried much. Oh sure, I might imply I have because it’s the best descriptor in a given moment, but in truth, I’ve not shed many tears lately. I’ve held back and my insides hurt from all the holding in which might well have something to do with being swined.
Acknowledging by name the tenacious bug that bested me early this month isn’t a common practice. And a name doesn’t matter. Only the symptoms are relevant and from what I gather from an internet search, the flu is the flu is the flu. The host body determines intensity. And no, my bit of ‘swine’ is mostly gone but its tail is a whopping head cold that caught me off guard and continues to a take a toll on my focus and energy. Hacking and blowing my nose, sneezing and struggling to breathe, is exhausting. Most of us have experienced it though, eh? All we can do is rest, drink plenty of fluids, and binge watch episodes of Doctor Who to ward off boredom. (Okay, that last thing might not be everybody’s choice!) Oh, and cry. I cannot, nor am I trying to, stop the tears.
I believe that illness is the body’s way of clearing stuff. Sometimes we can work with the body, learn to do better for it and journey on. Other times, it leads to our death. Regardless, if we want to, we can learn a lot. We just resist that learning more often than not. We try to skip the hard work of self-reflection and run from change. We push when we know we need sleep. We eat too much, or too little, fuelling addictions instead of our bodies. The stressors in our life swell because we are not proactively dealing with them. Pretending is what we do, but our pretense is superficial. We are not coping. We are not overcoming. On the contrary, we are victims of excuses. And, those excuses remain attached to us. They thicken our blood. They erode our bones. They clot and form tumours. It is resistance to change. It is fear. We all face it and it is for all of us, a call to confront ourselves, transform our emotions, and take responsibility. The process can be very difficult. It can make us sick. But, then we can become well again.
So today I’ll rest, put some lotion on my sore red nose, smile when I cough and welcome the tears when they come. They are making room for something new.
My wish today is that you find your way toward your best and healthiest self. Don’t worry about how that looks for anyone but you. Lots of tears may come, let them. You are the only one who knows what is best for you. If and when you are not sure, close your eyes, calm your breathing and listen. The answers – every one you will ever need – are behind your eyes.