YEP, back in the day (a year ago) I could be hilarious, apparently. Not that I knew it at the time. Usually I made fun of myself for some peccadillo or silly reason. A happy storyteller!
Laughter delighted me!
I USED TO BE OPTIMISTIC -
Little Ms. Hopeful. That was me. A friend might say, "Look at the parched fields - global warming". I'd respond, "I know, but this is winter, spring will come!". Pollyanna lives.
I USED TO BE LIVELY -
Independent, energetic, creative, positive, diplomatic, strong, irreverent, rebellious. Striding forth, chipper, spicy, loving life.
WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT PERSON?
Against my will I was taken into a place of darkness. My natural state was loving beauty, loving loved ones, loving nature. Expecting to feel fairly fit forever.
When I left that natural place I felt despair and confusion.
The sabateur of my cheerful lively person is ANXIETY and FEAR.
I finally recognised in myself a deep well of fear.
WHAT I'VE LEARNED IS:
In addition to being independent, creative, positive, diplomatic, strong, irreverent, and rebellious -
I can also be anxious, fearful, dependent, weak, frail, reverent, compliant, outspoken, and even PATHETIC (my most despised word).
The thing is - when you have to endure the darkness of UNWELLNESS - you can become frail and pale - a ghost of your former self.
After a year of icky sicky achy misery I've had to Surrender to the purgatory of feeling separated from my known self - and there was nothing much I could do about it, no matter how hard I tried.
Until now, most of my 'dark nights of the soul' have been emotional. I've come to value the important learnings from those devastations.
But Serious Health fears were new. And they've touched an unexpectedly vulnerable place in me.
Some of you know this place well.
So who am I now? A formerly funny independent merry soul OR a weak pathetic whining old broad?
Well, it depends. On good days my cheery optimistic self kicks in - and she doesn't hold her weak dependent self in contempt any more. She says, "OK, how about a cuppa tea?"
I'm grateful now for glimpses of the simple life of health and joy. I'm even grateful for facing my fear and anxiety, the helplessness and the unknowing.
I wondered/wonder if I'll ever reconnect with those cheery positive aspects my former self? It may be a slow journey back to health but - maybe I'll emerge from this necessary underworld with the treasures of a more accurate self-image and a lot more humility.