Firstly may I apologise to anyone who was alarmed by my sudden announcement on FB that I was retiring to digest some bad news on my health situation.
Secondly, I am reminded of the old saying that no experience, no matter how bad, is wasted, if one learns something from it. Lessons learned hard are learned well. An old Buddhist saying is “one learns far more from one’s enemies than from one’s friends.”
So my post on FB was a first reaction and that led me to thinking about this subject. OK so I had some bad news about my health into which I won’t go because people parading their patients’ notes in front of the world is boring! Let’s just say that I felt I’d been punched in the stomach, either the bottom fell out of my world or the world fell out of my bottom – they feel exactly the same.
So my reaction was Tabloid headline – Major Disaster – Ailsa is going to die! Well that is pretty silly (as are most tabloid headlines) because everyone is going to die.
Now let’s go through the stages that one goes through with bad news. First – shock horror! Maximum impact and no thought. Reel away holding the head and over-acting like a real pro. If you are like me and tend to go to the “worst case scenario” first, you sit down and imagine how much worse this can get. In the case of death, not much. Of course with health, one goes through all the awful situations of complete dependence, bottom-wiping and helplessness.
If we have any modicum of common sense, we do what I did. Walk away. Take time out. Don’t talk about it even to close friends. Have a long time to get a perspective on it. Stand on the mountain top and look down on the “shock horror” you first read. How bad is it? Truthfully?
Gradually one starts to break it down into manageable mouthfuls. OK so if I can’t do this, I can probably do that. If my time is limited I know I have time to get my affairs in order and leave things straight. That will be a nice thing to do for my family and I can pack my bags for the trip knowing I’m not leaving the kitchen table a mess of breadcrumbs.
This bite-downsizing continues until the whole thing is completely in perspective and then comes – a degree of acceptance.Only at that point can one start to talk to people about it without raving and ranting, bringing them to the verge of suicide too!
I’d like to thank this for happening because it has helped me sort my head out. Yes, initially I thought I was going even more mad but I have ended up more calm and collected. If one can achieve this state of acceptance this infers that a solution is half way achieved. In this case my symptoms are being treated which is the only thing that can be done, there is no cure. The greatest fear is the fear of the unknown and having a handle (name) to put on something disarms it somewhat.
Don’t ask, I’m not saying but I think I’m as well recovered from all my accidents and operations as I am going to be – it is downhill from here. I can take that. I will cut my coat to suit my cloth and if you want me to, I’ll make you a scarf too xxxx