When I chose my word, I was grasping. I was hurting emotionally, mentally, and physically. I wanted relief, but not the fleeting kind. I wanted to get better, to be better. I didn’t know how to go about it, but I knew focusing on healing was the only way I would be able to move forward.
The bane of life with chronic illness is that you will never “get better.” There is no end in sight, there’s no time frame. So how does one heal with chronic illness?
You heal your soul.
I’ve found that if my mental and emotional well being are healthier, it’s easier to cope with the aches and pains of my body. If my heart is light, I’m able to push that little bit harder to take care of myself physically. If I can find the good in things, the bad things don’t seem quite so bad.
The flip of this is that it’s ongoing. One doesn’t just slap a bandaid on their heart and carry on their merry way. You have to devote yourself to the path of working on your emotional and mental health and walk that journey every day. Sure, there are going to be bad days, days where you want to bury under the blankets and hide behind the mask of sleep. But there will also be good days, great days where your heart is flooded with joy and the smile on your face is so wide it makes your cheeks hurt.
I’ve walked this path all year long. There were rough days and great ones. There were tears and smiles. Sometimes it felt as if I had taken one step forward only to land on my ass and slide ten feet backwards. Somehow I always got back up. Maybe not right away and maybe I needed a hand occasionally, but I got up. I might have a few new scars for my battles but I also have the tiniest of wrinkles around my eyes. I call them my laugh lines.
I don’t know yet what my word will be for 2014. I imagine it will come to me at some point in the next few weeks. Whatever it is, I know it will further help me on my path of healing.
Have you chosen a word for 2013? How did your year shape up? Will you choose a word for 2014?