August 2015: Healing Journey
If you recall last month’s posting, I have been experiencing periods of rest throughout the month of July. Well, it has continued into August, teaching me even more lessons about resting, waiting, trusting, and the healing journey. And, of course, more down time has afforded more time for thinking.
One of the stops along the healing journey this past month has been to track down on Facebook peers, friends, acquaintances from my youth, with limited success. This has been a curious by-product of my downtime considering I am one of those who would push my painful past into oblivion if I could. So it had me pondering what this rabbit trail was about, when it occurred to me that I have not been stricken with sadness or rejection if a friend request went unaccepted.
Now, normally I do not take rejection well. This development had me even more curious about this seeming rabbit trail on my healing journey. What was digging up people from my past all about? And I realized it wasn’t about the people at all, or expanding my friend list. It was about integrating my story rather than fragmenting it. I must quit pushing away the painful parts and start embracing my entire story—the saddest chapters included.
The other important lesson I have learned in the past month is to approach each day as a gift to be opened. Not knowing what would fill my days could have prompted anxiety to take over and even immobilize me. But taking the lessons from July about resting, I concentrated on spending my down time however I liked.
I chose not to listen to the workaholic voices that taunted me about garden and house work; and eventually they diminished. I did whatever struck my fancy—including napping. And I found the days filled themselves with activities. Restful activity. I didn’t push myself to accomplish anything except when I had casenotes to write. I found simple projects lying on the to-do pile that usually got shoved to the bottom. I focused on rest rather than productivity.
To my surprise, I find I will miss this slower pace of life. But it is not sustainable. Bills do need to be paid. Garden and house work does need to be completed. However, I can take these lessons into the next month.
I can continue to be open to each day as a gift to be unwrapped. I do not need to respond to down time with anxiety or face large projects feeling overwhelmed. I can tackle each day with whatever it brings, focusing on people rather than productivity—and sometimes the person I need to focus on is me.
Another avenue of discover was relinquishing the comfort, familiarity, and stability of routine. I kept looking to the next week to return to normal; but each day, each week looks so very different. I may have to quit looking for the familiar and start embracing each day as a novelty, each day being one-of-a-kind, unique. A gift to be opened. Obviously a tough lesson for me to learn as just the other day, my journal noted, “I really do need to learn that every day is a gift. To be lived fully. Even if that is resting/taking it easy.”
May you be able to open your arms wide to let in each day as it unfolds rather than be frustrated by unmet expectations or upset routine. Embrace each day as a gift to be opened. And it might just surprise you with joy!