This healing journey of mine remains deeply wonderful–and very fulfilling. It also is strange and new everyday. I can explain my illness in themes, predict what my fatigue levels may be at, and I’m usually pretty accurate.
I can choose to take in others’ opinions of how I’m going (or not going) about healing. I can listen to healers who believe that I should just think of myself “as not having a chronic illness” and what I think will manifest in reality. I will be “healed.”
Euro-centric models of healing focus only on the physical body & the elimination of symptoms. Healing physically is a wonderful thing & there’s so much more.
My emotional & spiritual healing occur alongside my physical healing (of course!). Lately, with my first two weeks of fall tutoring underway, I shifted into more anxiety and a mental focus of “what I should do.” And these thoughts were largely separated from my intuition, my imagination & my dreams.
One of the most simple, and yet profound gifts from Hashimoto’s has been learning to take care of myself & listen to my body. And to realize that this reality is not divorced from asking for help from other people.
I still remember days when I laid in bed all day.
I remember when I would grocery shop, come home, and lay down for 3 hours, before I was able to do anything else active.
I remember when I would wake up and do gentle stretching, and then get back in bed.
I remember learning to make bone broth.
I remember when I was so weak that I could barely stand in the shower. I remember when my hand would shake as I tried to lift my arm up high enough to reach for the shampoo.
These memories used to hold a lot of trauma, because they were so frequent, so routine, and they felt so isolating. I was stuck in my past pain, unable to move forward.
I’ve moved forward now-and the memories still linger. The body doesn’t discriminate. I still hold my complete healing journey in my body.
When I woke up yesterday on the full moon, I read Chani Nicholas’ horoscope for Capricorn. At the end it stated:
“Stay with what is concise.
Truth needs no embellishment. Your purpose is profound, but need not be overly complex. Keeping things as simple as possible will allow you to experience the deepest aspects of your calling and the most important yearnings to attune yourself to.”
And it stopped me in my tracks. I knew that my own anxiety and being in my head was getting in the way. And I also know that I must bring all the learning, all the lessons, all the deep, simple realities from illness forward again.
Everything in chronic illness becomes simple. It has to be this way. Listening to the body becomes a means of survival. Just listening to the rational mind, not only is not enough–it’s incredibly damaging. The body is just simply more wise, more tender, more understanding, more loving.
Tears are surfacing as I write this. This reality that is so simple and so controversial. But I believe it with my entire being.
“No one is disposable.”
We make conscious and unconscious decisions every day about who is “worth it” and who isn’t. And here I’m not talking about the healthy need for boundaries and hard conversations, and maybe the need to have someone not be part of our lives anymore. I’m not talking about growing out of certain relationships and moving on.
I’m saying that at a core level, we are all worthy of love. We all desire to give and receive love and the disposable nature of relationships has extremely damaging effects.
In documenting my own healing journey in the first draft of my book that I finished this summer, I found many memories coming up of everyone who showed up. Sometimes just once, sometimes many times. These people had different capacities, different things they were saying “no” to, so that they could care for me in their own unique way. They had their own struggles, their own traumas, their own beautiful life.
They showed me that I wasn’t disposable. I was fighting to believe this on my own–and I never would have gotten there on my own.
I needed to hear over and over again—
You are important.
You are valuable.
You are worthy.
You are loved.
You are brave.
You are a fighter.
You are tender.
I ran out of stamina on my own. I could generate that for about an hour a day, and then I needed other people to step in. Of course I did: I was fighting for my sanity, my health, my life. That was and is never meant to do alone.
And one of my deepest desires is to show up in deep reciprocity and gratitude for all the people who taught me to believe with every part of me–that I was worth fighting for. That I was still seen. That I was not disposable.
There’s a lot of mystery around how this shows up for me in everyday life. It shows up all the time–and I’m to stay in the flow and direction of Spirit. Less in my head. Less forcing. More back to the basics of the deep truths that I believe. And this starts with me.
I am not disposable.