I AM HAPPY! How can that be true? And yet, it IS true. In another moment, or another day, that may change but now, I am happy and it is important to take the time to celebrate that. Clo and I planned a trip to France. I was sick when we decided to go. I was not at all sure I wanted to go. I froze when I got there and then became even sicker. The memory of this trip will always be clouded by illness, though we did manage to have a good time despite our respective sicknesses. Clo was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer just 11 days after we returned to Canada. It makes sense she was less than fully herself during our trip to France. Since coming home a LOT has happened.
I think I have finally caught up with myself and my life challenges and all of the changes that have happened. I now drive everywhere. I cook some when I want to, but mostly I don’t want to. I entertain MY way. I walk briskly with Aimee. I have terrific friends and incredible connections and relationships with my children and grandchildren. I feel healthy, wealthy and wise!
I feel confident I have gotten a grip on life. I felt like I was losing my grip there for a while. My own previous 2 or 3 year battle with heart challenges set me back big time. I really lost confidence that I could take care of myself. NONSENSE! I do an incredible job of taking care of myself. And now I know I am also exceptionally good at taking care of those I love and am responsible for. What joy to rediscover myself! I know that I will rediscover myself again and again in the years to come.
Trust yourself. Oh, please, do TRUST yourself. You can do ANYTHING. Really. Having courage does not mean you are without fear. It means you have learned to live with fear, find the ways in which fear is actually your friend, and set aside the part of fear that is not useful. When you are afraid for your partner or child, stamp your foot and shake your head. Remind yourself that even the incredibly scary and threatening stuff is an opportunity to learn and grow. Join forces with the one for whom you feel fear, and together it all feels way more doable. Even small children can join us in helping take the best possible care of them. We ALL want connection. We ALL want to fit, to belong, to be loved. Join forces with your loved one in a manner that generates even more love between the two of you.
Battling with your beloved is not useful. Battling is not useful. It wastes time and energy. Love, support, finding peace and hope, receiving support, asking for support…..it all makes life worthwhile. Even at the worst of times.
In the midst of our latest brain tumour crisis, I asked Clo what would be helpful, what would feel like comfort and be nice. She said “Having Liz White soup and Nancy Christie muffins in the freezer!’ Now isn’t that easy AND true. Comfort food. Soothes and heals. It reminds us that we are loved. Liz and Nancy were delighted to help out. We even got some brownies out of it! Luxury.
There are worse case scenarios more challenging than ours. I have significant heart challenges and simultaneously Clo has stage 4 cancer in breast, liver, bones, and brain. No doubt you agree the scenario I have described is challenging. And yet today I can say with no doubt that it is surmountable. Because we are a team! And it is so much the trust and the loving, the knowing where we fit and belong, the knowing we are wanted and we have found home that holds all of this together. Hallelujah