Friday, November 6, 2015

To Just Be

As I walk outside, the cool crisp air of autumn stings as it touches my lips and pours itself into my lungs. Its brisk presence sending a familiar shiver down my spine. I close my eyes for a moment trying to hold back the tears that threaten to unleash my stifled anxieties of the season. The voice of a dear friend loops in my mind in an almost prayerful chant. The words, "this year is different" reverberate throughout my being. Emotion threatens to engulf me as the weight of each word and their deep fixed meaning stir within. I can feel the beating of my heart in my throat and feel the steadiness of my breath quicken. I become lost in the past and anxious about the future. I do my best to suppress these anxieties and hide them from the world, but at times they build to such an extreme that I feel as if I am suffocating. Every moment seems laden with these hidden anxieties- exposing my true insecurities and vulnerabilities to the world. Anxieties caused by a life lived with Cystic Fibrosis. 

I take a deep breath and do my best to rid myself of such crippling thoughts and anxieties. I take a moment to look at the world around me. To take in this very moment I have been given and let the past just be. To be hopeful in the future while still remaining rooted in this glorious moment. I remind myself, "I am breathing, I am alive, and I am thriving." 

Beneath the Surface
As I take in the beauty that surrounds me, I think about the last 365 days. I think back to the very day the realities of CF became so very real - the day I lay in the hospital post sinus surgery and bronchoscopy. I think about what we've all been through together. I think of how quickly time passes, yet the pain and heartache of this last year still feel fresh and new. You may not be able to readily see the wounds any longer of this past year, but they still live beneath the surface amidst every breath I take. I think of my life today, the possibilities that lie before me, and the people that have selflessly helped make this journey so very incredible. I think to myself - would today be as sweet or even possible if we all had not endured this past year and CF's unforgiving wrath? Would my passion and drive for tomorrow's possibilities be as fiercely focused? I don't know. Or has my potential been born from these adversities only to come to fruition by living through them? 

As I breathe in the brisk Fall air, my mind churns with the anxieties of the past year, but something catches my eye and consciousness. It's a beautiful rust colored leaf vibrantly interrupting the cold grey sidewalk. Its stark beauty reminding me of the beauty that fills every moment and every step of my life. Instead of being paralyzed by the pains of the past I am propelled forward by the resounding hope-filled words "this year is different" that live in every step I take and within every breath I am given. 

Hope-Filled Anxieties
Life is filled with endless anxieties and the beautiful struggle to balance the impact of the past, see the good in today, and live in the hope of the future. I will let the past just "be" while being rooted in gratitude for today. But most of all, I will live with an endless hope for the goodness that fills the next 365 days. Love to you all. 

1 comment:

  1. I've said for years that the seasons of Spring and Fall which Midwesterners absolutely love, those seasons can be the toughest for my wife with CF. One day the humidity spikes, the next it plummets. The Thermometer's mercury often does the same thing. Thanks for the reminder that while we can't control crazy Midwestern weather, we can control our attitude. Gratitude for Today! Thanks, Lucas