OK, yes, I have been in hiding. This past spring has been hard for me. I decided this year that I was going to stay home and face my grief head on and find life again, not just a little bit of life but life full on. I am not there yet. I am getting closer.
One thing I have definitely learned, since I was diagnosed with breast cancer four years ago is to ask for help. I have continued this theme in my life through all the broken bones and Jim’s cancer and death. Asking for help, I discovered, is a sign of strength. It also reflects a commitment on my part to find the strength to move forward.
My healing team includes Beth (massage therapist & friend), Gayle (acupuncturist & a little bit more), Dr Wright (chiropractor & friend) and the latest addition is Heidi (psychologist). I decided that I was just being blah for too long so I decided two weeks ago to go back into counseling. It is good to have an unbiased third party in my corner.
Heidi wants me to journal. I bet that none of you know how much I dislike writing. Over all my years of adventure and travel, I have often had people say to me “you should write a book”. Well that sounded horrible to me. I have always seen myself as more of a story teller and yet, here I am writing a blog. Hmmm…interesting.
I have not physically sat down and started to journal. I was hiking in the mountains east of San Diego last Friday, alone. The whole time I was hiking I found I was journaling in my head. That was much easier. I saw myself coming home and putting all my thoughts on paper. Instead here I am blogging.
I made a statement when I was with Heidi that I felt I was waiting, not for Jim but just waiting. It was suggested that I journal about what I was waiting for. As I was climbing that trail this was what I asked myself about.
What am I waiting for?
1. True Love. (sorry I had to start on a light note. The Princess Bride is a favorite movie of mine.)
2. A big aha moment. Something that is going to define my life in it’s latest incarnation.
3. I wait for someone to tell me what I should be doing next. (I know, I need to tell myself)
4. Smaller aha moments would also be more than acceptable.
5. I am waiting to feel the fullness and joy of life again. There are small moments but I want more.
6. Hugs and recognition from friends and strangers. People who will take the time to ask me how I am doing and be willing to accept a truthful answer and then take me to a movie, go for a walk or play scrabble. (just a sampling of things to do)
7. I am still trying to figure out when to sell my house. This spring I have been very glad to have a comfortable home to hole up in. Seeing spring in my yard was a delight.
8. Where is my next trip in my RV. I have not finished thanking my far away friends, although, right now it feels important to stay put.
9. Sometimes I feel I am just waiting to figure “it” all out. What “it” is, I am not sure.
There is a beginning of my list. I still plan to journal. I find the free form of journaling a comfort as I just write what my hand tells me to. Have you ever heard of the Book “The Artist’s Way”? This is a very good book that the reader needs to be involved in. I did the process of journaling three pages every morning for weeks. It was boring and insightful and I was glad when it was done. I find there seems to be a magic about putting your words down on paper, even when you don’t really want to. Writing gave a different perspective to my thoughts and feelings.
This blog has certainly helped me see some truths that might have otherwise slipped away unnoticed. I also notice Journeys of Thankfulness helps me keep my heart and spirit open to the moment and is a heartwarming way to keep in touch with friends.
We get a copy of the book when you are done!
Janet, you have a way with words. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and what you are going through. You are encouraging! A book sounds really good. Hugs Ruby from Indiana(would you like to come to Indiana?)
Hate to disabuse you about “journeling”. Your Blog IS your journal in many ways. Your photos are as well. I still do my “3 pages” most mornings. This is simply writing what comes and is not intended to be seen or kept, or even read again! It simply opens the channels. I can’t/don’t write like a ‘book’. I write vignettes – word paintings I guess, of what I am feeling like. What I remember so viscerally I am re-experiencing the event. These are most often less than a page. A little bit like poetry, perhaps. There are lots and lots of ways to ‘journal’ that are healing tools. Find the one you like the best and go for it!!!! Much love and thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. Charlotte