I haven’t written here in a while. I just stopped wanting to write about my health because it became something that was too big for me to put into words. The constant fear that I kept at bay through a careful maintenance of “fight or flight” mode slowly started to collapse around me. I also stopped wanting to live in that space where I was consumed by how I was feeling. As a person with chronic conditions, I will always have to worry about that, so I wanted to find a way to let it float in the background, to hide it behind a smile so that I could focus on the more fun and fulfilling parts of life. I also stopped writing because as my health began to stabilize, all the anxieties I had been stifling for years came out full force. I was no longer afraid of dying. I was terrified of living, and of everyone around me dying.
It was, as most emotional and physical transitions are, quite challenging. Coming down from the adrenaline that courses through your veins as you shore yourself up for surgery after surgery is hard. My anxiety took control of me for months as I threw myself back into life with full force. I’d missed so many years that I felt I had to compensate by working faster and harder and more efficiently. Thus, the lion share of the last few years of achievement have been taking place over several months rather than years. I would like to say I have conquered my fears and anxieties, but I haven’t. Indeed, the PTSD and anxiety that I manage are not easy to contend with and will likely linger into the background like all my other physical, medical ailments. And that is okay, I can live with those, because, I get to live.
Transitions, even the most beautiful ones, can ignite fear in us. Fear is not the enemy though, it doesn’t need to be vanquished. Instead, I sit with my fear, soothing it, calming it, and feeling it in my heart beat, as I go out into the world, smiling big, pain and anxiety only as quiet background noise, and I begin to triumph and celebrate my life, and all our lives.
As I’ve said before, trying to learn to hope again is incredibly difficult and painful. I have different reasons for it than you but it’s been a challenge nonetheless. I can’t say as I’ve come to embrace the pain and live with hope. Not sure I know how I would do that. I am, in turns, angry, depressed, in pain, expressing a tiny seed of hope, doubting that hope, touching base with my faith, doubting that faith seriously, etc. etc. The fact that you keep on fighting in light of what feels like a more real struggle (though I know that’s nuts, pain is pain and we all face it for different reasons) is one of those things that does give me hope.
Thank you for sharing all this, I appreciate it. I feel like the world needs us, and that is reason enough to push pain aside and try our darndest to thrive.
Thinking of you ❤