Surrendering to Breakthrough

Pain has claimed left side of body – shards of glass shredding upper arm, wrenching rib cage.

It’s been days now and I am worn down by its relentlessness, so I lie down; will my prone body to surrender to the bed, envision the hand of a more gracious force cradling, soothing.

I breathe, consciously pushing the air deep into cells, focus awareness away from the pain, feel exhaustion in the lower back, stiffness of ankles, rigidity in calves – the effort of day-to-day living has taken its toll.

I picture myself lying on an air mattress, floating on calm waters, the rays of the sun lifting the chill, penetrating deep – bones and muscles welcoming heat. Imagine my breath as a conduit, breaking up the crystallized blockages – the gentle flow a steady and persistent nudge – inviting harmony.

Tension, just under the left shoulder blade, interrupts; my jaw clenches. Continuing to breath, I bring my awareness there, see the image of an airplane propeller, can smell the fuselage – did I injure myself en route, I wonder, juggling luggage too heavy for me to carry?

I see the nose of the plane plummeting, heading for a crash landing. I’ve been feeling this way lately – the downward slope of symptoms escalating. A chill washes over me – fear dwells with certainty in my cells. Even in my mind, the sky has clouded over.

I begin again. Surrender myself to a higher power. Ask for release of this fear, for guidance out of this mire. Focus on a break in the clouds, inviting the return of the sun.

Chill persists, and I choose not to fight it, letting go of thought, my body finally releasing its hold, and I float into a zone of replenishing calm. I breathe deeper and drift.

I must have fallen asleep at some point, and when I wake, I have new clarity: I returned with extra baggage from my home visit. Concern for my mother, worry for daughters – responsibility weighing me down.

It’s a conscious battle, this search for inner peace. It involves awareness – willingness to name the patterns that set us back and the courage to release them. My mother’s journey is in God’s hands, and my children all adults with a right to forge their own paths. Time to be responsible for my own life.

This quotation, borrowed from Thriving Under Pressure’s post: “Catch Your Breath.  Take a Rest, speaks to this lesson:

“Self-care is giving the world the best of you,
not what’s left of you.”

– Dr. Andrea DiNardo

(I’ve challenged myself, and my readers, to focus on stillness this week. Won’t you join us?)

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Permission to write, paint, and imagine are the gifts I gave myself when chronic illness hit - a fair exchange: being for doing. Relevance is an attitude. Humour essential.

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