The word "LIVE" was a prompt on the Facebook page of a writing group that I belong to. Thoughts began to flow and words forming sentences of the gut wrenching feelings running around inside me over these past months. Perhaps with this prompt, this word "LIVE" I can put words to what's been going on around here and the resolve it's brought me to.
While watching a favorite news show over the weekend, I saw a piece about some veterans who, despite grave injuries had made a choice to fight and LIVE out their lives in a new way. I thought of friends who have battled the “c” word, or lost the function of an organ. The human spirit is an amazing thing! When I think of those people I am always in awe of their determination in making these adjustments and fighting on. It puts proper perspective on the puniness of my little problems. But even in the small things we must decide with determination to carry on and LIVE.
It began a while ago, this feeling of sadness. Over the last couple of years I have battled some physical problems that have changed the way I live. I have always been a physically strong person, a hard worker with a very physical job and a love of gardening and ALL things outdoors and a deep love for writing. Things had gotten so bad that I couldn’t hold a pen and even typing was painful, forget gardening AT ALL. I have never been unable to do something I set my mind to, so this has been hard to accept. Then, in May I had to have a suspicious lump removed from my breast. This was the fourth time in twelve years, so I was quite concerned. It never becomes old hat, you’re always holding your breath until you hear those words from your Doctor and thankfully, it was NOT the “c” word. Things began piling up upon things…
Then the things involving my loved ones began. My only sibling’s marriage came to an end after thirty plus years, another family members relationship ended, my best friends Mothers long battle with Alzheimers ended, a friends lung cancer came back and another close friend went into total renal failure. We rounded it off with our foster grand buddy’s season in our little family coming to a close. It was all too, too, much. I have felt this grieving for months now. My heart aches so much for each of these loved ones. I take phone calls, I listen, give advice, pray, hang up, cry and pray some more.
So what do we do? What do we do when we know not what to do or how to go on? We make a choice and choose to LIVE. We get up in the morning putting one foot in front of the other and take that first step to continue to LIVE. We LIVE not in the familiar, safe, comfortable way that we have known. We pray, we change things up, make adjustments, grieve, make more adjustments, cry out to God for help and we begin to LIVE out our adjusted life (when we liked the old way just fine)! This is our new normal, our future and we choose to LIVE and go forward. Maybe alone for now and without some of those that we held so dear.
In the middle of all these changes, I’ve made some adjustments. Life is shifting and I am making the choice to live in new ways. I am good to my body that is telling me “enough is enough”. I try and follow an anti-inflammatory diet. I blow it and cheat, waking in the morning with hands that won’t open for hours. Sometimes when we have a big garden project I have a helper. The first day he helped out I bawled like a baby! But we all make adjustments to meet our new life.
I am healthy, my mind and body are whole and for this I am so very grateful. I hope to never take anything for granted. Life is to be cherished and those we love should be held close and told daily how much we love them and we want them to choose to LIVE too. Despite how much things hurt and how unfair they seem, we are here for them, to walk beside them in their new life. From this day forward, we will place our feet on the floor, hold our head up high, cry out to God for help and choose to LIVE. LIVE this beautiful life.