All we have to work with is that which we have to work with. When I was sick, I felt that I didn’t have what I needed. I didn’t have enough resources to get me through. Whether it was my physical energy levels, money, relationships, or opportunities, I felt that I didn’t have enough. If only I had “fill in the blank”, I could make it. I could heal. I could move forward.
After my first relapse, I got to a point where I was tired of feeling at the mercy of my situation, and of the people around me. I was tired of feeling oppressed by my surroundings. I made the decision to take 100% personal accountability for my life. It didn’t matter what others did to me, or what society offered or didn’t offer me, I was going to take responsibility for my own life. It didn’t matter how much I suffered, I was going to own it. When I came to this decision, I remember feeling so empowered. No one else had control over my life!!!
As I put my decision into action, I realized that I had to manage my own resources, and utilize what I had available (even if it seemed to fall short) to move forward. The first resource that I decided to utilize was the medication. I was going to take my meds (at least until I found another solution) until I got back on my feet and gained the additional resources that I needed. I worked whatever jobs I could, such as washing dishes or stocking shelves, even if I knew I was overqualified. I was on Social Security disability for eight years, and I sacrificed buying many material possessions that my friends and others had, to make ends meet.
I did what I had to do to move forward. If I couldn’t walk for an hour a day, I walked for five minutes a day. I humbled myself before people who didn’t deserve it, and I ate huge helpings of humble pie that I didn’t deserve. I swallowed my pride, and I bore my suffering with as much grace as I could muster, and I kept moving forward, day after day. I later realized that it was “strength training”, and it gave me incredible faith, strength, love, and compassion. As it turns out, my illness has been one of the greatest blessings in my life.
People used to tell me that God wouldn’t give me what I couldn’t handle. I didn’t believe it at the time, and thought that it didn’t apply to me, and that I couldn’t handle my situation. But I did handle it. I believe that each one of us is perfectly suited to our own lives. What we have around us is what we have to work with, and it is what we need to grow and to move forward. It is our manure for growth. Maybe it doesn’t seem ideal from our perspective at the time, but it will strengthen us and teach us lessons. I believe that everything happens for a reason, and ultimately for the highest good.
I wish you the very best on your journey. God bless you!!!