Frustrated. Angry. Despondent. The hail storms arrive and then disappear like flash storms. To shake up my life in case I was beginning to think I was in control. What a gentle reminder they are.
That’s how I feel every 3 months.
Every time I go for a test to be examined; and every time I receive the news that my pre-cancerous cells (pre-cancer meaning I’m many years away from it being a definite threat…but a threat no less) are still lurking I become angry. Angry because I have to deal with this; angry because it is not fair that it happened to me and angry that no one else has to deal with any consequences. Just me. I have to live with this. In between the three months I become calm, forgiving, gentle. Hoping that the calmer I force myself to be, the sooner I will heal.
When I go for the test again, there is hope. “This time.” I know this time the results will be good.
A year later and many tests later I am back to angry. This time did not turn out to be This Time. The anger turns into rage and then complete devastation. “Why the hell is life not going as I planned???” I want to scream. I have screamed.
Recognising that I had subconsciously given myself a year to learn from this; to let go of whatever resentment and anger I’ve kept hidden; to learn how to process emotions and in between each three months I feel like I’ve grown; like I’ve moved forward; like I’ve accepted that life is. But none of this has meaning if I continue to try control life itself. When will I accept that I cannot put timelines on life or death? That none of us can control the uncontrollable. None of us can force life to make things better without us making ourselves better first.
As I reflect and question what’s happened, and as I let my anger come and go in waves, I am learning that this will not leave me until I am able to accept that it has happened to me. Until I learn to stop being angry because I am not in control. My mind is trying to calculate how to determine the next hailstorm, not seeing that I haven’t even dealt with the current one.
I will not heal until I stop asking why life is so unfair; until I recognise that even if I heal physically, it will transform into some other illness. And continue to show up until I learn to heal from within first. Until I learn to face my battles head on; until I stop getting angry every time life doesn’t go my way; until I stop trying to force change within me so that it happens naturally.
Until I learn to step up; show up and go through life; and not around it.
I will not heal until I am able to go for another test and regardless of the results, I accept it as is, with no anger. With no pain. Accepting that an apology will not arrive. Accepting that life is only unfair if we don’t learn the lesson. Accepting that things will continue to repeat itself in various shapes and forms until we learn from it; until we learn to go through the pain; and not around it.
I truly believed that if I worked on my inner being I would heal. But the reality is that healing doesn’t arrive through force. Healing arrives through surrender. Healing doesn’t happen until we learn to sit with the pain first before we can release it.
And there can be no release without acceptance first. There can be no acceptance without acknowledgement first. There can be no acknowledgement without feeling first.
It’s so counter-intuitive, isn’t it? We’re constantly trying to avoid pain; trying to avoid feeling hurt or anger or sadness. Avoiding all the “bad” emotions. But by avoiding these emotions, we replace it with disease. The emotions show up as stress cells, as pre-cancerous cells, as fat cells, as anything-not-good-for-us cells. And then on top of that we may make more decisions to continue avoiding the emotions and never make the link between how our emotions and our feelings have an impact and effect on our bodies. And then it goes further because we’re so far down the line, we make excuses on why we can’t get out of whatever situation we’re in because it’s too hard, or it’s too painful or it’s pointless. We become numb to the size and number of storms trying to get our attention. We fail to see that the only way out of the storm is to go through it. We fail to see the bridges around leading us to drier, more pleasant times. But if we take a moment and pause and look through the storm, we’ll catch a glimpse of a bridge initially. And as we focus more on it, we’ll see the other side and we’ll go through the storm to run across.
So here I sit. Allowing the waves of anger, frustration and despondency to come and go. Not controlling any of it. Not trying to control any of it. Letting it be. Because I know that to beat this, I can go through the pain of feeling to heal. I will go through the pain to heal. I will no longer avoid the difficulties life throws at me. Because life isn’t going to stop hitting me with hail storms until I learn to appreciate the cold. Because the more you try to avoid your feelings or avoid making the right decision for you, or the more you avoid the truth, the hail storms will just continue getting bigger and louder and colder.
So how big a hail storm do you want to handle?