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

How Are You At Climbing?

We all remember the Tsunami in the Indian Ocean in 2004.  It was a devastating time for the people and countries involved and a moment of pure powerlessness as we, the rest of the world, stood by and watched the devastation.  When the waves roared, and the water rose, to survive people had to get to higher ground.  They had to reach points in their country’s geography that would exceed the height of the flood waters.  This type of movement took energy, resolve, and determination.  These people didn’t have any choice if they wanted to survive.

I’m sure when you were given your diagnosis you experienced your own personal tsunami.  The epicenter is in your body, mind, and soul.  It disturbs every part of your being to the core.  You are trying to outrun the news but to no avail.  You are going to have to make decisions quickly, and with determination.  Your goal is to reach a safe place so you can regroup and make your next decision.

What is higher ground for you?  For many higher ground is information.  Reading and researching your illness will give you the information you need to make informed decisions.  You may be the type that chooses to engage in emotional or psychological higher ground by seeing a therapist or health and wellness coach.  Your first choice may be to reconcile your religious and/or spiritual beliefs and questions by meeting with a spiritual director. 

We don’t choose the same geographic location, figuratively and literally, as our higher ground.  Our coping mechanisms are different.  Our problem-solving skills are different.  Our life experiences are different.  Our ability to ask for help is different.  You’ll have determine what “higher ground” means for you and then act on that meaning.

I want to give you a heads-up.  At times climbing is exhausting.  It can take a toll on your personal resources, both internal and external.  There was no way for you to train for the climbing expedition, but know it must be done because when you reach your “higher ground” you’ll experience hope.  It’s this sense of hope that will allow you to move forward on your journey to health and healing.