Chronic illness and going back to work…. yes, I have a chronic illness but don’t mistake that for meaning that I am my chronic illness. At the same time there are moments when I do feel that is all I am, when I am worried about falling asleep driving home, or to work. When I look at facing a 12+ hour shift and wonder where the energy will come from. To fighting back tears because there is someone in front of me that is also in pain, and my pain can wait.
I have a huge toolbox when it comes to handling pain, from meditations, to herbs, to prescription, conversations with friends and to just being in Adam’s arms. But lately I have been facing something new, new unrelated symptoms. First comes the denial and hope, it is just the stress of the job. Then a pattern starts to emerge, steps are taken, and it doesn’t go away.
That is when the fear comes, that place I am right now. Waiting to see another doctor, hoping to for an answer and remembering the pain of that journey two years ago, the not knowing, not being believed and finally chronic illness but also tools. Tools for physical support, emotional and spiritual. Because all three must be treated.
Since I don’t have the physical tools right now. I go to my emotional and spiritual tools, which need to be sharpened. That is the journey I am on, sometimes it is finding new tools and sometimes it is polishing and sharpening a tool that hasn’t been used in a while.
It is time to trust the process to keep going, whatever and however that looks. Crying, screaming, laughing, smiling, fight and surrendering it is all there, each and every day. You ever notice how you can brighten someone’s day with just a simple smile, a simple word of sincere encouragement, or taking a moment to really listen? Not only do I notice how it can change someone’s day, but I am experiencing how it changes my day. A smile or hug from a co-worker, that brief conversation of encouragement might make a huge difference to someone and everyone they interact with. The key facet is sincerity, it is taking the time to see the person first, pausing to put down whatever is going on and see what is being reflected to you. Such simple words and yet a lifetime pursuit.
Question of the day: What tools do you have and what tools do you get to forge as your face your upcoming battles? It is fall, time to harvest; what did you grow this year?