Every day I awakened to a new world. I finally realized, after all these years, nothing HAS to hurt me. I can choose to live on the positive side or I can choose to exist in the negative.
What does it mean to live in the positive? Each moment that I exist I can choose to see that moment as an accomplishment. 100% success. I made it through the moment. And if I’m truly in this moment, this moment, this moment, I choose to live that moment as a Good moment. There is no such thing as one bad moment. Each moment stands independent of the next and the previous. It’s only by stringing them together that I can see this moment GOOD, this moment GOOD, this moment GOOD, one after the other.
Being the consummate drama queen that I am, I stormed into my bedroom, threw my magazine on the bed, and through a stream of tears began yelling at my husband because he didn’t tell me I had the silent killer. Secretly, I think I always wanted to have a moment like that, so I just ran with it. I mean really, how many times in your life does the opportunity to star in your own Lifetime movie present itself?
I don’t waste energy speculating about a future that may never come; I work to create the future I want instead. I am grateful for each breath, everything I have, and all the people who enrich my life every day.
Yet, “death shall have no dominion,” as Dylan Thomas wrote. Silver linings are everywhere. In fact, sometimes the world looks so brilliant, I’m grateful when an occasional cloud shields me from the glare. Life is beautiful, whatever shade it comes in. I welcome the darkness that reveals my guiding star.
Marie Dixon Frisch
I have always been a spiritual and prayerful person. Now, I stepped into a higher arena, and found peace for myself. I am retired and disabled due to this disease. No matter the final outcome, I can accept it. Thank God for the time I have had—and still have. It is a time of preparation. Time is more precious to me than to one who has not gone to the precipice and looked into the black.
All of that is back story to me. It only sets the stage. The real drama is the question: Why? Why did God transform my generous act into a near-deadly event? As Saint Therese of Avila is said to have said, “If this is how you treat your friends, God, it’s no wonder you have so few.”
As the Benadryl daze lingers into dawn, the Catholic saw returns: “Offer it up.” The nuns used to say that—still do. To me, it’s the coolest thing about being Catholic. It’s this view of suffering as a remedy. Not just a necessary evil, not a punishment for Adam and Eve blowing their diet, not even a divine teaching aid or strength training for the soul. In the paradoxical reasoning of Church theology, suffering heals.
The inconvenience and mess is just a part of my life now, and in spite of it, I realise it is better to do this now and again than to be dead 24 hours a day.
There's no doubt about it, the severity and frequency of my phantoms has decreased some over the last few years. Moreover, I have learned to handle the demon within. Most of the time nary a soul would even recognize the twinges and sharp surges going on up and down what's left of my arm. Mindful of the moments they too suffer, I shed tears for our troops learning to use the latest state of the art limbs. How bravely our resolute heroes work to get back to their own business of living.
Having had a TIA has made aware that I am not immortal, thus I feel more self-protective of my dreams. If anything good has come out of this health scare, it has been a renewed affirmation to live life to the fullness every day. It has also renewed my zeal for discovering my truth/my purpose.
I have to admit I was afraid it was only words, that as time passed and the fear faded, so would this reaffirmation of our feelings. But my daughters no longer take me for granted and my husband proves his love more with each passing day. After five years, I can only imagine how wondrous the next five will be.
What does all this mean- For one thing it is clear that madness is not meaningless. An extreme mental state opens realms of consciousness that are not usually accessible. More often than not, this event is like opening Pandora’s box, or taking Phaeton’s ride–the result is frightening. Still, the experience contains mines of treasure as well as destruction. After all, if Phaeton had succeeded, he would have learned to drive the wild horses of the sun. He would have gained the wisdom of Apollo–the gift of prophecy and the glory of light. He would have learned the mysteries of music and poetry. He would know the art of healing.