This photo is from a hike Mary and I took out to the Ancient Forest. It was a test to see how well we each were faring after some health issues. It was a fabulous day - not too hot, not too many bugs, and we both did better than we had any right to expect, given how sick we had each been for the previous couple of years.
When I talk about acceptance, many people interpret that as giving up. As though looking at what one is going through and accepting the current reality is a defeat of some sort.
In reality, acceptance is powerful because when you clearly see where you are, what challenges you need to overcome, you can begin to plan a way forward.
Life is full of challenges. Life is full of disappointments. Grief. Once one gets through the anger and grief stages, it becomes possible to buckle down and take up the challenge of moving forward from where you are. If I constantly look back at where I was, what I have lost, I cannot move forward.
So it is again. After a win with the cancer drug (unexpected remission), I was left with deficits from the adverse effects I had from the drug. My activity horizons were shrinking and I was feeling weak and unable to continue my life as it was.
Not knowing if I could improve, or if (given my age) this was as good as it was going to get, I made the decision to a) replace my AVL with a loom I could more easily weave on and finally b) stop doing the shows so that I wouldn't have the deadline pressure of producing enough inventory to do those shows, plus I could shut my business down and stop needing to do the kinds of things such a business entails.
With those things either accomplished or underway (I think I'm getting friendly with the Megado and look forward to making some nice textiles on it) I was finally able to sit and think about my body - my actual current physical limitations.
I am blessed with good doctors/medical professionals and was able to snag a very quick appointment with a doctor who treats chronic muscle pain. On Tuesday I had my first treatment. My muscles have been injured and overused through the decades, and I expect that the treatment will take some time before I see significant improvement, but I can say that there does appear to be something good happening. My neck/shoulders will likely take longer because the damage is decades old and the patterns of work over use on top of actual injury may take a while to resolve.
But first I needed to assess where I was, physically, before I could begin to see a way forward.
Acceptance is not giving up. Acceptance is saying, here is where I am. Then asking, how can I move forward?
Perhaps next time Mary comes in the summer we can hike the Ancient Forest again.