Monday, October 02, 2006

It feels so good to feel good

I recognize that I am the only one who can truly know how much better I am.

And I know, too, that seeing will be believing for many of my friends. How long will she sustain it? Let's just wait until next week, next month, next year to see if we believe.

But none of that matters, because I know. I believe.

I spent much of the past nine months trying to convince myself that I was better, and I could be pretty damn convincing. But sustaining well being was an enormous effort.

That's how I know how much better I am. Being well is not taking much effort at all.

This transformation did not happen overnight -- I've been doing a lot of soul work and self care this summer. The transformation did not happen overnight, but my realization of it did.

On the second night of my awareness, I turned to my husband and said: It feels soooo good to feel good! And it does.

And there's comedy involved, too. Feeling good does not mean you never feel bad. Life still has its ups and downs. What's funny is seeing myself deal with a melancholy moment -- like my sense today of being on the outside looking in with the other kindergarten parents who see me as a church leader and not a friend. It's funny to experience the sense of loss or regret, acknowledge it, and move on. In a matter of minutes not days. I was laughing almost aloud at myself today: This, Karen, remember, this is what real life feels like. And there is happiness even in the midst of the momentary sadness.

And I know there are other sadnesses ahead. There will be a day someday soon when the temperature on campus and the sunlight and the breeze will be identical to that brilliant autumn day when we first learned of Dad's diagnosis. And there are the anniversaries to get through -- his birthday, his surgery day, the anniversary of his death. And while I don't exactly welcome them, I feel ready for them. And I want to be present for Mom in ways I couldn't be earlier this year. And I want to continue to celebrate Dad's life and his ongoing presence within me.

And I'm ready to be present for my friends again, too. Several have begun to entrust me with themselves again, knowing I will listen and understand, sensing, perhaps, that I am back. And it feels good to feel good enough to hear them and be with them in meaningful ways.

While those in my life who still care deeply about me may be holding their breaths to see how long I can sustain this, I am not holding mine. I know that I am not sustaining or maintaining, I'm simply living. And I'm enjoying life's frustrations and joys, savoring them even as evidence that I am alive and well.

I feel like myself again, and I had really, really missed her.

1 comment:

RevErikaG said...

Karen, great to see that resurrection is not a one-time deal, but something we can experience in the many seasons of life. Glad you're good! Erika