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Dealing With Sickness

Sometimes, out of the middle of nowhere, a health issue pops up. Sometimes it is serious, sometimes not. But whether it is serious or not, it always messes with your mind, attitudes, and emotions. How do you get through it?

It is not an issue of wimping out, having a pity party, or giving up. As long as you are alive, you have to deal with it. How you do that is up to you and nobody else. What does your mind say? What attitudes do you choose to encourage? What emotions do you endure?

Common attitudes vary from looking on the bright side, taking your courage in hand, and do what you have to do to get better, whatever that consists of…be it physical therapy – doing it with a good effort, knowing that what you put in will determine how well it works – take your prescribed medication as you should – change of diet, either temporarily or permanently – asking for help when needed, even if you are independent-minded and do not want to ask – make a list of questions for your physicians – listening to their answers – in short: Doing whatever it takes to achieve your goal of improving and getting better.

Looking on the other side of attitudes, you see an unwillingness to go through the pain of it all, be it exercises from physical therapists,  uncomfortable tests for evaluation, unwillingness to trust your physicians or their advice, inability to cope with it all so you withdraw and do nothing (which is an option, though not a very wise one), just hoping that somebody out there has a magic pill to make it all go away.

So far, I have not found any magic pills. Have you?

I cannot wave a magic wand and make the problems disappear, never to return.

The emotions you deal with can exacerbate an already tough situation, as can your brain. Fear immobilizes – always! Anger is debilitating. (Yes, anger is a component, more than we like to admit.) It can even be a generic anger that this has happened to you.  It is all inside of you, bubbling away like a witch’s brew.

Knowing the cause – be it an accident, exposure to a sickness, or just a problem with your body – rarely helps.

Somehow, you need to find a way that works for you personally. You must seek help to resolve the thoughts, emotions, and attitudes. Books can aid you. Counseling can, too. Venting with a good friend can come to your assistance. Prayers for me are a vital part of it all, requesting them from caring family and friends I know.

When it is a loved one who is ill, it becomes a lot more complicated. Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness come unbidden as you watch them suffer. You might be able to paste on that smile while you are in their presence, trying to help where you can, but when you are alone, it can fill your heart with angst and fear. You are not in control of anything. That is when you have to do the same thing as listed above: Get yourself under control. You cannot be of assistance to anybody if you don’t calm yourself first.

I know dear people who are caught in the horns of this dilemma. Denial causes inappropriate reactions, delaying resolution – sometimes permanently – as the condition continues to deteriorate.

It has been said: “The way out is the way through!”

I believe this from the very bottom of my heart. There is no avoiding it. You just have to ask yourself: How am I going to respond to this situation? Examine your thoughts, feelings, attitudes, and emotions. They are as important as the symptoms of the illness. You are a whole person, not just an arm, leg, heart, head, or other body part.

With that in mind, perhaps you could start by making a list of them. Then you can look for ways to resolve each one. There is no evading this issue, so deal with it.

The question is: Are you willing? Do you want to look for a resolution? It is within your purview to do it – and you are the only one who can. The problem is well defined. Now look for the answer.

God’s blessings on your journey!

 

 

 

Live, Love, Laugh!

This particular threesome is visible everywhere – on cars, plaques, walls, etc. Sometimes it is:

Live Well

Laugh Often

Love Much

It could be very esoteric (beyond the understanding or knowledge of most people, as defined by the dictionary). It could just be that it is so simple, its deeper meanings are overlooked in the chaotic, busy world we live in. Certainly, many things occupy are thoughts from the second we wake up to the minute we go to bed.

But taking a deep breath and pausing, just looking at the three above phrases, ask yourself, “What comes to my mind?”

Live Well could immediately be translated into a materialistic ideal in lieu of being happy with your life and how you are living it.

Laugh Often could be nullified by the stress you are feeling at this moment over many situations in your life which you do not feel you have any control over, engendering a sense of hopelessness.

Love Much could simply be an erotic invitation to enjoy the flesh and its ecstasies, or it could make you think, “Have I told my loved ones today how very much I love them, appreciate them, enjoy them?” You know, with all the tragedies that have happened in this world in these past few years, I wonder how many people passed on without hearing that simple phrase?

Live, Love, and Laugh are my personal commandment for every moment of my day, every single day I am alive. I want the people in my life to know how very much I appreciate them. I do not want anyone to doubt that, ever. Each one is a gem in his/her own right – unique, special, one-of-a-kind.  No matter how small they are, or what age they are, or how I know them. It matters not to me. I want to cherish each and every one, and I want them to know it. Life is too short to do otherwise. I want to look each one in the eye and let them know that I am listening to what they have to say. Each relationship, no matter if it is a busy store clerk who is obviously having a bad day, or a long-term friend, deserves not only my attention, but a smile as well. (You might be surprised at the lift a simple smile can accomplish, or a small act of kindness.)

Life passes us by through simple inaction, words unspoken, feelings unexpressed, and good intentions never fulfilled because one runs out of time. That happens with every minute of every day as it becomes  history from this present moment.

You have to ask yourself, “Do I want to write a note today to just say Hi to a lonely friend, or a dear one I have gotten out of touch with, or even a note of forgiveness to someone (whether it is ever sent or not)?” Perhaps even a phone call,  an email, or a Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Love is more than a feeling – it is a state of mind. If you are coming from a LOVE perspective, you act differently than you would if it comes from any other point of view.

Laughter, alias Levity, is a cure-all of just about every negative emotion we can muster. Sometimes we feel like the tail end of the dog, instead of the nose or ears. We get wagged a lot – by others, by situations, by things we believe are not under our control.  Laughter has so many gifts to share. Yet, in this serious world so many of us live in, Laughter is the exception, not the rule. Isn’t that truly a sad state of affairs?

When I say Laughter, I also mean the state of mind known as JOY or Inner Joy. It is a sense that all is OK in your world. Is it? Or not?

You could ask, “What do I have to be Happy about?” Then follow that with a diatribe of complaints. Now I ask you, does that make you feel any better? Doubt it.

In your negativity, may I ask you, “When was the last time you went outdoors to experience Nature at her Best?” I find that even a trip to an indoor area where there are plants helps when the weather outside is adverse. When it is not, step outside. Find something from Mother Nature to admire. You will find your heart lifted like magic, your stress will disappear, and your perspective will lighten and improve.

Are you willing to make the move from the dog’s tail and go up to the ears or nose? You do control your destiny. Declare it to be so.

Look for my three friends: Live, Love, and Laugh in all their fullness. May your step be lighter, your heart happier, your breath much deeper, and your life more meaningful. God bless you on your journey!

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