Feeling the losses & the gratitude

This fall I am feeling my losses fully. My recent tumble in my garden surprised and confused me. My balance is so not what it used to be and I must accept this fact gracefully. In fact I am now realizing that I can no longer do more than one thing at once, and that includes breathing! I have always been one to take off in a rush to get things done. This has only gotten worse because I now feel I must do something before I forget what I’m doing! But this simply will not do for me anymore. My damaged brain (one TBI and three concussions) and my inability to breathe deeply now creates a situation where I MUST TAKE THINGS MORE SLOWLY.

I know. I’m not the first person to discover this limitation of injury and aging, but I see now I am taking things too far to my own detriment. I need to move slower and do less even when I’m anxious to do more. I get angry with this situation, but this is my reality now. As always I come back to my own truth:

Acceptance releases everything to be what it already is.

I have always pressured myself partially because I was taught to be more and contribute. I now also see the flaw in that way of thinking. I am merely another human trying to find some truth and meaning in this life of mine. I am not worse or better than the rest, because in the end most of what we do does not matter. That is why I now laugh when I see this:

So I am letting go like so many do as they age, and as strange as it may seem, I sometimes see the benefits of my present circumstances. My head injuries have caused me to slow down, something I needed to do so I can appreciate each moment more. For example, I have loved Stephen Levine’s “Meditation on Letting Go” for decades, ever since I met him back in the 1980s in Boulder. But it is only now that I can fully appreciate its meaning.

So this Thanksgiving I give thanks for the life I have right now and can finally slow down enough to fully appreciate.

6 thoughts on “Feeling the losses & the gratitude

  1. I watched my parents struggle with ‘life’. Having to slow down to take life’s curves. And now it’s happening to me! Fighting it only makes one frustrated.
    So, like you, I’m determined to be grateful for what I still have. And for the experiences that I’ve had.
    And accept my shrinking memory and mobility!
    My brother said it well: Yesterday I went into a room and actually remembered why I was there! Of course, it was the bathroom…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can understand this completely. Last year while on a wonderful trip to Ireland I took a nasty fall and injured my elbow and shoulder. I was walking too fast and probably giddy basking in a post concert glow and not paying attention to my feet. I didn’t seek medical attention, I just brushed it off and as a result the remainder of my 2 weeks in Ireland I hid it, but I was in pain and miserable. I have come to realize that I am no longer able to do 10 things at once. I need to slow down and take my time. Thank you for this reminder!!

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  3. I think you are right, for people of all ages, it is not helpful to rush, rush, rush. For me prayer and reading the Bible at bed time is a way of calming. This post is a good reminder to not try to do too much regardless of our health situation and age.

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  4. This is exactly how I’ve been feeling lately. I’ve started mindfulness meditation classes to get in touch with the present moment instead of trying to think about what I used to do in the past and celebrate what I can do now, each day.

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