I’ve done a lot of talking about disease lately it seems. When I sit and think about all of the great people I talk with every week, there is no doubt that I do discuss disease a lot. My perspective though is that really I have a job about hope and empowerment.
Ultimately that’s what makes me tick. I am hopeful. If there is one thing I believe in more than anything else in this world, it is the power of the human spirit. I don’t think that we often understand the enormity of our own power to create, to love, to grow, to heal. To me, life is full of adventure and meaning, ready and available at each step we take. Of course the events in our lives can feel mysterious and elusive as we grasp for the deeper meaning. But ultimately, I do believe that we are given enormous opportunities in almost every moment to learn, to grow, and to heal.
In the beginning and still today, CoSozo was created to provide hope and empowerment for people. I was frustrated in my efforts to find information and resources for my loved ones and dismayed that it seemed that some organizations were more interested in their positions and power than in trying to help people heal. In the interim, I discovered that there are gifted, passionate individuals and companies all around us who desire to make a difference in the lives of those they touch. I also, as a wellness consumer myself, realized that we all are just looking for the resources we feel can best help us with our own wellness goals and initiatives.
Whether you have a disease from which you’re trying to heal, trying to establish a greater sense of peace and balance in your life, or just want to find a great yoga class, wellness really is a lifelong journey. That journey changes as we learn and grow as individuals, and as the various experiences in our lives occur. Ten years ago, I didn’t have the same perspectives on health and wellness that I have today. My life circumstances were different, my goals were different, even the knowledge I held at that time was different than the wisdom I hold within today. I made decisions in response to my goals or needs, which changed throughout the years as I’ve grown.
There is a simple and elegant truth in the fact that our lives are shaped by those with whom we interact. Even those with whom we learn hard lessons gift us with the knowledge of what doesn’t feel right or good, which empowers us to make different choices in our future. The individuals who help us to learn what makes me us feel more whole and empowered in our lives can also shape who we become and how we express ourselves in the world. The people in our lives can serve a powerful purpose in our path toward healing by reflecting those aspects of ourselves that are difficult to see, by helping us to grow, and also by helping us to heal in more concrete or even abstract ways.
A good friend of mine recently introduced me to a friend of his who has breast cancer. She has, to put it mildly, been through the wringer. Jackie has been going through chemotherapy rounds now for months and as a result she is often fatigued.
One of the things I love most about Jackie in the short time we’ve been acquainted is her humor. Knowing that her rest would help her to heal and feel better, she enlisted her friends to join her in The Nap Team so she could vicariously heal from the additional rest the team received from their own naps.The Nap Team, of which I am a proud new member, naps in a show of support for Jackie’s health. Jackie jokes that we all take our commitment lying down and that no deep thought (or any thought for that matter) is required.
Now when I nap, not only do I get the great snuggly feeling that naps bring but I also get to take a few moments to send a smile and warm hug across the ether to my new friend. Jackie reminds all of us, through her remarkable spirit, the incredible power of life. (For all of you fans of my radio show, you can hear Jackie in person during Part 2 of our special on the health care bill by going to CoSozo Radio here on our CoSozo.com site.)
Often, it is disease or crisis that compels us to evaluate those parts of our lives that need to change. Particularly during times of crisis, it can be easy to feel like life is happening to us, like victims of random events. Focusing on the ways that you can best support yourself and your needs can help you begin to feel like you have some measure of control and comfort in a situation that feels frightening. It also can help you to harness your thoughts toward the positive so you don’t get lost in fear.
Fear, like all of our emotions, is remarkable in its divine purpose. It can provide us with an unmistakable warning signal that something isn’t right. It can instantaneously trigger our flight or fight impulse to protect ourselves. It can also damage our health and our vitality if we allow it to become too dominant in our thoughts and life. It’s important to acknowledge that you feel afraid and even get professional support for that if you need it.
But it’s also important to continue to show yourself that you’re a powerful presence in your own life. That may mean that you’re willing to rest when you’re tired, or ask for help from friends and family members. You may even feel the need to change your schedule or daily activities to be more supportive of your physical, emotional, or spiritual needs. We are all powerful human beings and disease does not diminish that fact. Actually, some individuals discover that they had no idea just how strong they were until they were faced with a medical or life crisis.
A friend of mine recently shared with me that one of the gifts he received by going through a terminal health crisis with his partner was that they both discovered through that process how to live life in the moment. He spoke at length about how freeing that experience was, to do what is so challenging for many of us - to live in gratitude and joy for each moment they had together as each moment arrived.
While I don’t understand why all of life’s experiences happen, I do fervently believe that each of our experiences affords us the opportunity to learn and grow. By surrounding yourself with positive thoughts, proactive expressions of self-love and self-care, and individuals and companies who can provide you with the best opportunities for healing and wholeness, your life will expand as you do.
Whether you are in a state of enjoying good health or are in the midst of a challenge of some kind, my wish for you is the same. May each and every one of us live our lives in a way that makes us feel most authentic, most supported, and most loving. And may we take the best of ourselves out into the world each day so that we can show up for those who can be most impacted by the expression of whom are in the world.
It is, at the end of the day, the potential of whom we can be in our lives that makes me feel most hopeful. I know for a fact that we all need healing of some kind. I also see individuals every day who want nothing more than to be of service to someone in need. Together, we can create miracles!
And of course, if that all seems just a little much for you in the moment and you just want to take a good nap, Jackie and The Nap Team appreciate your act of solidarity!