Posted in after the diagnosis, coping with chronic illness, coping with life threatening illness, living with chronic illness, Living with Illness

Barnum and Bailey’s Three Ring Circus

I always think about the circus when spring arrives; the two seem to go hand-in-hand.  I remember as a kid going to see the circus in Madison Square Garden with all the pageantry and regalia making it quite a spectacle.  When I think back I wonder how as a child I was able to keep track of what was happening in all three rings of the circus, but maybe that’s the fallacy; I didn’t keep track.  I focused on one thing until I got bored or something else bright and shiny caught my attention.

So what does the circus have to do with health and healing?  Once you’ve crossed the threshold from health to health challenged life becomes a three-ring circus.  It’s like you’re juggling how you lived life in the past, the life your living on the journey to wellness, with the hope that the future will bring better days, increased quality of life and of course a cure.

You can’t live in all three rings at the same time.  The only one you have control over is the middle ring; the one you’re living right now, this very moment as your reading this entry.  So how are you going to devote yourself to this moment?  What can you do immediately after finishing this post that will make your day better?  This isn’t about figuring out how to fit twenty clowns in a tiny Volkswagen Bug, but figuring out how to fit the most quality of filled moment into your day.  It’s now about wondering if when you fly on trapeze will you make it; but flying through the air with faith in your abilities and determination to achieve wellness and a higher quality of life.

The difference between the audience and the circus performers is that the audience is looking to be entertained and the performers are living each moment of the performance with a mission.  The same goes for your own life.  This isn’t about trying to impress someone or follow a script by your medical provider.  This is about charting a course to wellness that takes care of the body, mind, and spirit. 

How will you embark on your journey as ring master?


I've lived my life in service to others. I'm focused on mental health and how it impacts our relationships, culture, and society. Through creative expression and narrative I believe we can impact change.

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