It’s been a while, hasn’t it? For those of you who do not know, I’ve had Lyme disease in the past, and I’ve been fighting off a relapse for most of this year. For me, the biggest drag is that it takes bites out of my mental capacity, and writing is almost impossible. The good news is, it all comes back eventually. But while I’ve been lying in bed, trying not to feel sorry for myself, I have noticed some advantages to being so still for so long.
For instance, everything slows down, and you can see events unfold from a unique perspective. Without distractions, you can put together connections that might otherwise escape you if you’re entrenched in the daily routines of work, family, and the usual disruptions of life. These obligations all important and worthwhile, but they definitely take up a lot of mental energy.
So when the universe clears the slate and you entertain yourself by watching plants grow and seasons change, new things take on significance. In my case I noticed, and then became a part of, the cycles and activities of the wildlife around my home. I watched two pairs of sparrows build nests, hatch eggs, and rear their loudly peeping offspring. Every evening I knew when to expect the bats to flutter around the yard catching flying ants, moths, and june bugs. There is a ground squirrel who likes to perch atop our shed and utter his chirping call early in the morning (waking me up and making me put in ear plugs – I love nature, but not so much when I’m trying to sleep). At least two chipmunks hang out near the bird feeder waiting for a handout. The quail spend the hot afternoons of summer under the bush in front of my den window. A tarantula keeps her nest next to where I park my car, and I often see the tidy packages of bug parts that she leaves on the path when she’s been housecleaning.
I’ve also had more of an opportunity to watch, rather than be a part of, the social circles I am connected to. By standing back and being silent, I have learned more about how my friends interact with each other, and I have a much better insight into where they are coming from. I’ve learned a lot of lessons from just listening, and not talking. I’ve gained more compassion for my loved ones.
And when the illness and stillness are over, there is a tremendous sense of rebooting life, and receiving a fresh start. Now that I’m mostly better, I see myself and my purpose from a different perspective, and I have laid sturdy plans for the future knowing that I have clarity of vision.
Being sick sucks. And being sick for a long period of time can definitely make us feel helpless and hopeless. Despite my revelations, I still struggled every day to maintain a positive attitude, and I admit that some days I failed. But overall I can accept the blessings of the lessons I learned from the experience, and use it now to put my life not just on track, but on a new, better track. Thank you Lord and Lady.