the paradox of illness?
I'm in a strange paradoxical place just now; slowed by the rhythms of breathlessness to a
different pace that's closer to becoming my norm now. My head is in a dilemma of how to
recover my former state whilst accepting or at least working within my new reality. It's the challenge of managing a long term condition and knowing how and where to push the
boundaries of an undiagnosed problem. It's exhausting at one level and at another level,
strangely, it's quite compelling; that call just to sink into the soft landscapes of being
peaceful.During the time in the wonderful landscape we visit in Bulgaria it was simpler just torespond and to rest. The mountains reach into the soul and soothe it in a way that justinvites a different pace, a different living. The internal and external find an equilibrium that is so very inviting. I found myself thinking of it today as I listened to this podcast by John O'Donohue and Krista Tippett.
I'm reflecting on whether I'm typical or unusual in a way that I'm finding myself discovering a kind of well-being through illness. It's focusing the mind, slowing down the body and creating a different, slower way of being. And it's quite welcome in a way. Maybe I'm always destined to learn the hard way but at least I'm still learning!
I'm reminded of a section the Mary Oliver poem
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Today the soft animal of this body just wants to rest so that's what I'm doing. It's been a
lovely summer, though punctuated by illness, it's also been that depth of reminder of the
importance of love and family; of taking time to listen to the soul and responding to its
voice and of having time just to be in the preciousness and arbitrariness that is life.
I said this year would be about making memories and they are all precious, even the hard
ones. The soul is fed by many things and to finish I want to share with you the song that
moved me ( and many others) to tears as I watched the Glasgow Girls ( go and see it!) in
the Edinburgh Fringe. In a week when images of children have stabbed our eyes and
raised our consciousness yet again of the trauma being inflicted on Syria and beyond, Ishare with you the song; "It's no a wean's choice" ( it's not a child's choice)