I always thought of blogs as being narcissistic, business related, or as my sister's, a way of keeping in touch or memorializing.

But, by necessity, I am learning a lot about myself. I find I need to get my thoughts out, and it helps me to know that someone else will read them. So I have created this little space for myself, to express the things I have trouble saying (be it emotional or physical trouble), to share what I'm going through, and what I'm learning through it.

I absolutely welcome comments. It's nice to know how people relate to what I'm saying.
To send me a private message, please e-mail me: flylittlewordsfly@gmail.com
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Friday, 18 November 2011

Transitions, transitions

When I wrote the title to this post, I had the song "Traditions" running through my head. I think it's a lovely irony :)

I have realized recently that I am in a state of transition unlike I've had in a long time. It's nice, because it's not a chaotic transition, but a gentle one. And I like where I'm going, so I'm happy to take it slow.

First off, I'm starting to really see this extreme healing state as a gift that my body gave me.

I realize that while what I have did not start in my mind, my mind made things worse. My body was trying to send me messages for a long time, and each time I didn't listen, it sent stronger signals, until it just sent me home. It's like a parent with a child - the first time you do it, you get a scolding, but by the eighth time you may just get grounded.

I feel no guilt about this, no shame, no blame for not hearing the signals. I want to be clear on that. What I am dealing with is still an unknown, but all signs point to it being viral, immunological or neurological in origin - not psychological, not somatic, not mental or emotional. It is a physical reality.

It's very hard to talk about the psychological aspect to any illness, because people often misread it, and this is especially so with misunderstood and mysterious conditions. A lot of people out there believe that if there is a psychological aspect to something, then the whole thing must be psychological. Which is why there is so much backlash among sick people towards any talk of psychological support. But I believe that there is a psychological response and aspect to all we do. What we call our minds are heavily influenced by what happens in our brain, and our brain is part of our physical being, and affects each and every part of our body, and is in turn affected by each and every part of our body. Our physical beings are so complex, that there is no way of fully understanding every intricate detail of the interconnectedness of all their parts.

As for me and my transitions, I am starting to see just how much of my recovery (not my illness - I know I said I wouldn't use that word, but I need clarity here - but my recovery) is related to my way of working, seeing the world and approach to life. The all or nothing approach. And one of the hardest things to see, and change is our way of approaching life. It takes conscious, dedicated and ongoing effort to do so. Being in a state of recuperation has given me the opportunity to really look at that, to really see what's going on, find different ways of sensing it, and to start to shift it, ever so slightly, a little bit at a time.

When I first fell ill, one of the first things I did was very Montessori - I analyzed my movements. In Montessori we do that for clarity - to avoid distracting the children from the lesson we are giving with extra little things - to help them focus on what's important. Here, I did it to see where I could conserve energy, so I could also focus on what is important. I adapted my home to what I found - put a stool in my kitchen, changed my closet - I rearranged my living space so that I could live more efficiently, and waste no energy on unnecessary movement. Now, I'm doing the same with my mind. I'm rearranging things in there so that I waste no energy on unnecessary worry, emotional turmoil, stress, or rigidly held beliefs that push me to do more than I can.

I am realizing that if I want to achieve a state of recovery (and I do, I really really do), I need to adapt my all-or-nothing approach, and learn to be satisfied with most, or some or even a little. I have been chipping away at this one for years, but now it's really in my face. When I knit, for example, if I make a mistake, even one that won't be noticed, I will actually unravel it and start over. If I'm not fully satisfied with a piece of jewellery I make, I'll scrap the whole thing. When I was a child, I refused to speak English until I could say the words I needed to say perfectly without an accent. This is an old pattern I'm talking about. And the older the pattern, the more engrained, the more patience is required to change it.

What I would like, in my all-or-nothing way of being, is for this to be done. To say, ok, I got it, let's move on. But that's not how this is going to change for real. So instead I'm saying yes, I see it, I recognize it, and I've changed a little. And I'm going to change some more. And then I will mostly change. And that's it. Because in order to change and all-or-nothing way of being, I can't actually fully change - even trying to do so would only feed back into the pattern. From now on, I'm trying to only try for 90%. I'm making mistakes on purpose, and I'm not going back to fix small errors in my projects. They will still be beautiful.


  1. Nothing stands but character--real,simple,transparent, solid character.That will bear a thousand blasts of opposition and hostility,and at the end will seem the richer,the chaster,for the rude discipline through which it has passed.
    ~~Joseph Parker~~
    Mi amor,tu me das valor,I have yet so much to learn from you. Thank you :-)

  2. It's all mutual, Cu. thank-YOU for the ongoing inspiration!