Friday “Freedom”

This IS going to be a short post. Watch me now!

Yesterday I asked a good friend of mine who has been in some extremely hellish and heartbreaking situations this past year – more like six months – how she managed to remain so positive and optimistic. The joke was on me with that one because she texted me back something like “What’ is optimistic?” I did laugh because I suppose a big part of the answer is in just that – not knowing exactly what is happening around you and just letting live, so-to-speak. However, when I explained to her what i meant, she said that the way she does it personally is to remain focused on what she is doing NOW. I clarified that “now;” she meant what you are doing at this moment in time, not what you are doing now in planning for the future. It is something you hear so many “positivist” “experts” and “New Agers” say – and something we hear from parables and “tales” from LONG ago.

At any rate, if you are anything like I am regarding your chronic illness, that physical aspect or aspects of you that are “ill” tend to overwhelm your mind pretty damn quickly. A slow day on eBay becomes “oh my God … how am I going to pay for this and this … and aside from that I don’t want to do this forever … it’s not sustainable…. I am SO F*CKING DEPRESSED THAT MY ILLNESS TOOK AWAY MY LAST SEMESTER OF SCHOOL FROM ME AND I HAVEN’T BEEN ABLE TO GET BACK … I am “poorly” educated at least on paper so no one would want to hire me … I need the money just to survive and that surviving isn’t cheap and of course in this country we can’t even just relax about “emergencies” because we also have to think about 1. CAN I REALLY AFFORD THIS?! 2. IS THIS GOING TO BANKRUPT ME?! and 3. MAYBE I SHOULD JUST DIE OR MAYBE I HAVE JUST TO DIE BECAUSE I CAN’T AFFORD THE TREATMENT.” (that’s a discussion unto itself … or many many discussions….). I have so little to fall back on and it’s all so …. shaky. And that’s terrifying.” and on and on and on. The “cascade” effect of the way chronic illness not just affects our bodies, but how it touches EVERY ASPECT OF OUR LIVES.

So for now, in alignment with just staying “positive” (we’ll leave the optimism for another discussion), I think we should all just really focus on one thing we are doing in our day that is “going somewhere” or that is helping us to “go somewhere.” Even if it’s just washing your dishes or taking a shower when those things are difficult to do (trust me, I’ve been there), it’s HUGE. You can’t get to the big stuff without tackling all the little things that are in the way first. And I really am trying to “retrain” my brain to think in this way … because I am the kind of person who doesn’t really “expect” to get what she wants, but I know that I have the innate capability to do anything I damn well set out to do. And that is where I want to end.

The first step in all of this – to having a better, more fulfilling life that is where you want to be living starts JUST with your ability to believe that NO MATTER WHAT, YOU CAN DO IT. I know I have talked about this here before, but it’s an important point and I do think that in the end, it will be the thing that will take me to “big places.” Never doubt yourself. Never question whether you can do something you want to do – you can question IF you really want to do it, but if you have made up your mind that you want to do “it,” DO IT BECAUSE YOU CAN.

I hope that was a good little “pep talk” for yinz this January Friday! I hope you are all having a happy and healthy day wherever you are in the world and I will be thinking of you wherever you are!!

❤ Always, Beth

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