A friend mentioned the other day that she knew someone who’s been in pain so long she doesn’t think he’d know what to do with himself if the pain went away. I imagined I knew exactly how he felt. The last few years as I’ve been feeling better and seeing good health on the horizon, I’ve realized that I’ve fallen into a world view of illness.
Several years ago I noticed that my progress to wellness had hit a big plateau and that I wasn’t working nearly as hard as I might to move forward. When I examined why that might be I found that — among a number of other reasons — I’d been living a life defined by chronic fatigue for so long that some part of me feared being required to go out into the world again. I started concertedly putting together a set of practices to help me progress and worked on staying mindful about sticking to it.
Now that healthy horizon has moved much closer and again I’m aware that I’ve become so used to lying around lethargically and avoiding having much on my schedule that I’ve lost track of how to be really out in the world. I don’t have an answer for this situation yet, but as I’ve talked to more and more people who’ve suffered long term health issues, I’ve realized that the world view of illness you take on because of it can take over so that it’s hard to imagine how life looks from a healthy place. For now I’m not worrying about it too much as my attention is still on finishing the journey to wellness but I’m aware that I want to start watching out more for opportunities to say yes instead of n to life and to think about how I want to be in the world again.