Today I wrote out a long article titled “What is Life When You Feel Held Hostage” which would have knocked your socks off!
I lamented, raged and was brilliantly eloquent about a subject which I shouldn’t post. I’m involved in a legal case stemming from my car accident 3 years ago and simply can’t openly write about that situation..knowing that lawyers are reading this now, hoping to use it against me gives me the creeps but it’s the reality of my situation at the moment.
All I can tell you is that I was amazing and instead I want to give you a bit of me on a different topic which will hopefully have the same message…here we go!
What is Life
This week I’ve been unwell, this is nothing new in my life. Physical pain has gotten the best of me for much of the past week and I’ve been lying down thinking about accepting life on life’s terms.
It’s a HUGE topic and apparently I can spend a horrendous amount of time contemplating it.
My daughters and husband are the ones who truly feel the effect of my chronic pain. Yes, I feel it physically but they feel it in my absence. Some will say it’s character building but in my heart I feel it as a form of robbery.
Our girls don’t have memories of me skating with them, swooping down the hills on skis or conquering the highest toboggan mountain. Instead they have memories of me sitting in a cozy chair or bed listening to them telling me about the event.
This is our life and I’ve come to terms with it but I don’t have to like it!
I hate that I’m not always present, I hate that I can’t be.
There’s no pretty way to say it, I’m not fully functional in my children’s lives. There are aspects of the kids lives which I simply can’t participate in.
Facts are facts and this is one reality in life that I can’t change so I’ve had to accept it and try to spin it into a positive for my children.
Instead of always skipping attending events I can’t fully participate in, now I go.
I go to the hills, to the events, to the ice rinks and I take photos, chat and stay as long as I physically can. I stand quietly by and watch my husband and friends helping my daughters to experience the aspects of life which I can’t today.
I’m stepping up and experiencing life on life’s terms
Rather than sitting and wallowing I made a decision to engage in life!
Are you doing this, asking what is life? Are you actually standing in your own skin, accepting who you are TODAY and staring down life looking for the joy that’s available?
Listen, I know all too well how hard it is to fight the instinct to give up. My journey has NOT gone to my plan at all and there have been days where I’ve wanted to throw in the towel and hide. In fact, I’ve hit times where I’ve had to withdraw to build up my strength.
But there came a time when I couldn’t do this anymore. I couldn’t hide from life, if I did I wasn’t sure I’d bother coming back.
Knowing this I’ve learned my limitations and have accepted them. This doesn’t mean I’m giving up on physical recovery, what it means is that I plan around them.
I attend events knowing that I’ve arranged quiet locations in which I can rest. I go to the beach with my special chair knowing that I will enjoy watching the girls play even if I can’t. I wave to my family as they go off to enjoy tubing on a friends boat knowing that I’ll hear all about it by the campfire that evening.
Instead of seeing what I’m missing in life, I’m focusing on what I’m experiencing.
Today I am sharing my perspective, just hoping someone will be inspired. While I’d rather share that amazing article I wrote about struggling though a situation I’m showing that we CAN engage in life on life’s terms.
That damned saying is proving true, “When life throws you lemons, make lemonade.”
Life is what we make it….yup there’s another cheesy sounding but oh so pertinent saying for you to consider.
Life for me is faith, family and living NOW not when everything is just the way I want or expect it to be.
Today I’m asking simply, what is life to you?
Doris Calvert says
I couldn’t find a contact email so just going to post here, I have read this and can TOTALLY relate, and I am not at your point yet because I am in extreme pain daily but mine is thanks to the medical system, they also took the ability for me to walk up stairs and even a block but can do a few steps around the house but cannot stand long enough to make a sandwich! I love camping, sports and travelling but cannot do longer than a 2 hour drive or I am in such bad pain and infections can set in, so I love your attitude as it is easier not to participate and tend to do things unavoidable like birthdays, Christmas etc. and it’s no life at all, so I know what it took for you to get there and it’s amazing!! With all you have overcome you are a strong woman and should be damn proud. I am interested in the special chair you mention while camping, that’s my main problem and cannot find a thing! Any help would be appreciated and thanks for the post it was uplifting for someone like me!
Thank you so much for sharing Doris, I’ll email you the chair details
Darlene Steelman says
Hey, Julie… hope you’re having a great day… I know what you mean about needing to appreciate the experience and not wish for what we don’t have. I love your blog and am so grateful to be able to read each of your posts… your recovery helps me learn something about my own recovery.
Wishing for things I don’t have is a common slip-up in my life (more money, a nicer car.. bigger boobs!) but the reality is, I am much better off today than I was this time last year and the year before that.. so on and so on.
So to answer your question: Life to me is appreciating the little things, letting go of the resentments and being the best person I can be for those I love and love me. Life is living on life’s terms and not getting caught up in the hoopla of “I want, I want, I want.” But focusing on, “Thank you for another blessed day clean and sober.” Without my sobriety, I have no life.
Have a good one, Julie.
Darlene I love this: being the best person I can be for those I love and love me. Too often I try to be someone I can’t possibly be…
Hey Julie, great article I love ur whole outlook on life an ur exactly right!!!! Too many of us r caught up in the chase or the race that we forget what r life is really suspise to b like and how we r really suspose to be living it!!! Can’t wait to read more from u, how do I sign on as a daily reader????
Hi there Aimee, you can subscribe up above by entering your email on the upper right
Tracy @ Cotton Pickin Cute says
Hi Julie, I just sent you an email about the Samsung ChromeBook laptop. Is it true? Praying it is. But I’m glad I came over and read this post. I’ve been feeling like a hostage, some of my own making for a long time. It is hard to focus on what we have more that what we dreamed of and never got. I’ve reminded myself of that often but not as often as I should have. I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been suffering in many forms. Good for you getting out there and making the most of what you do have.
Hugs and blessing… Tracy@CottonPickinCute