Saturday, January 25, 2014

Peace: It's not what you expect

I've been thinking a lot about Peace lately.

Whenever anyone goes through a hard time - personally or seeing someone they love going through something - we often ask for prayers for Peace

I have asked for lots of prayers of Peace lately.

The thing is, I don't think I really knew what that would feel like.

Peace.  

What does that really mean to a person going through something life-changing and difficult?

Well, here is what I've learned:

I have come to realize that I have found that Peace.

I have anxiety at times.

I get frustrated and sad.

I have moments where I want to throw my hands up and just give up.

Don't assume that Peace means everything is suddenly OK and all those feelings of fear, concern, anger, etc. are suddenly, magically gone. 

We are humans after all. We need to give us all a break.

But here's how I know I'm at Peace...

Right before Christmas I went on a very important errand of picking up bacon for the dish I was making for Christmas dinner - serious, important stuff.

It was snowy and icy on the roads, but let's face it, good bacon is worth it (vegans/vegetarians may not get this, but trust me, it's true).

I came upon a red light and with more than enough time/space, I pumped my breaks. Clearly my wheels hit ice because the breaks were all "um... nope." So I started to slide. 

Normally in the winter when my wheels catch and I slide a little I start shushing the car. No joke. I adjust the wheel as need and go "shhhh....shhhhh....shhhhhhhhhh" until it straightens itself out. It works 99.9% of the time! 

(I really mean to say 'shit' over and over again, but it just turned into shushing and I like that better).

This time, my shushing did nothing. My car was all "yeah, I get it, but no. I'm just going to go with this." Before stopping my car was completely perpendicular and there were a ton of cars around me. Thankfully, no accidents and everything was fine.

I've been in situations like that before and as the car turns and I'm out of control with other cars all around, my heart races and I internally freak out even though that does nothing - I have no control whatsoever.

This time, I did what I could and once I realized I couldn't do anything, I just let it happen. Obviously prayed for safety of the cars/people around me, but internally I was just like "ok, whatevs." No heart racing, no panic, no fear. Just whatever is, will be. I was at Peace.

I recently had my first trip out of state since my diagnosis. Our trip involved volunteering in Nashville and attending Passion Conference in Atlanta. It was fantastic.

On our last night in Nashville, one of the guys was pushing me in the wheelchair and accidentally pushed me off a curb. 

In a classic moment, the wheelchair went forward and down and I was thrown face first into the street. Honestly, I wish I could have watched it. When I think about it now I just laugh at the thought of the sight.

Normally in those types of situations I would immediately start crying - out of embarrassment mostly, but also pain, fear (there was a car coming my way), etc. 

This time, nothing. I honestly didn't care. I asked that my friend (who felt just awful about it) let me sit there for a moment as I got myself together, but I wasn't upset or embarrassed. I was at Peace. I was fine, emotionally.

The next day I ended up having to miss the first night of the conference because I needed to go to the ER in Atlanta. Totally by myself (I wouldn't let anyone come with me since they'd miss the conference, too) in an ER in an unfamiliar state for an entire evening. I was not freaking out at all. It was what it was and that was OK. I was at Peace.

Finally, I had a dream where I was falling. I'm sure most people have had those. You wake up in a bit of a panic because you were falling to your death. It was scary and uncomfortable.

While in that dream I literally said "let it happen. It's ok. Don't wake up. It's ok. Just let it happened." I was totally OK with whatever was going to happen. Even in dreamworld I was at Peace. (for those of you who are curious, dream me landed and was fine).

So that's where I am. It's not perfect. It doesn't mean that I'm like "yeah, Pulmonary Hypertension, this is awesome!! I love every part of it! Woo!!" If I was like that, I'd recommend you admit me to an insane asylum. 

But I'm OK. Whatever happens will happen. It is what it is. I'll do my best in each day and move on to the next. I'm at Peace.

It's a good feeling. I wish everyone could experience it.

~J 

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