I’m a woman who has lived most of her life with the false belief that I have an enormous amount of control over myself, and to a lesser extent, others in my family/inner circle.
This narrow/limited way of thinking and existing completely blew up in my face, or more accurately, my spinal cord and brain, when I was 46 years old. I was rudely introduced to Multiple Sclerosis. And all of that locus of perceived control began to unravel at a rather significant pace.
The “What Ifs” ruminated ever so loudly as I navigated painfully and clumsily through the aftermath of this Fuckening. And they still flare up from time to time, especially when I am annoyingly reminded that my body will punish me with symptomatic flares if I use too much energy at a time. Adapting to the energy conservation mode of living is a constant learning experience and I am not really a fan. However, living with the immediate consequences of over doing it is the biggest pain in the ass as well. Just love when my whole left side is weak and heavy and other parts of my body are completely numb and feel dead and pulsating with pricks of pain. Very fun.
And now – Enter the Fuckening of COVID-we are all existing in this physical and mental space of What Iffing and not knowing and trying to control outcomes and having to live with all sorts of uncomfortable unpredictable realities. I’m fortunate I have been practicing this shift in perspective that can offer more peaceful moments – this acceptance of all the hard pills to swallow ( both literally and figuratively).
It has taken me a week to process my neurologist’s decision to forgo my next Ocrevus infusion coming up in May. Ocrevus is a disease modifying treatment for MS- it wipes out all of your lymphocytes and is supposed to be helpful in slowing disease progression. Not a cure. Just a buying of time. But the risk of extra/bad/terrifying complications upon contracting COVID while being immunosuppressed is too great. So it’s the conundrum of Fuckenings.
At least I have some experience in this area….but it has made me think of all the Conundrums we are currently experiencing. So many unknowns, changes, absorption of disturbing news, polarizing and divisive information overload that is typically not helpful in any way shape or form. So many inhalations and exhalations are needed as we all learn to survive in this reality. In the present moment of whichever conundrum we are facing.
So as we enter into whatever day or week this is, let’s all keep coming back to breathing in peace and patience and compassion while we exhale fear.
We can accept that we are afraid (of whatever it is we cannot control) and simultaneously allow ourselves to keep coming back to the present moment we are actually living in. We can look for solutions instead of blaming ourselves and/or others. We can get creative in how we unpack the unpredictable nature of living.
May we all allow ourselves to practice these things in a way that we can notice the small shifts inside that can become beacons of light and guidance we can call upon.