Surrender Necessary for Serenity

Quit Fighting: Out of Surrender Comes Strength

These are words that accompany a wonderful visual representation of The Loss Cycle. Just when I thought I was getting the hang of living with my latest chronic health issue and its attendant challenges I found myself adrift in the sea of loss (aka the grief cycle). Yikes! I thought I had dealt with that earlier this year when I learned what was actually going on in the mental health department that had previously been obscured by what looked like known chronic health issues taking their toll on an aging body–especially my poor brain. So I spewed my concerns to a Very Helpful Person who I see on a regular basis. My mind was gratefully put at ease by learning that coming to grips with loss isn’t a one-time process and then you’re done, thank-you-very-much, as I had erroneously believed. Additionally, at the bottom of the chart–which, BTW, is subtitled The Normal Cycle for All Losses (something I found comforting even for someone who believes that “The Trouble with Normal is It Always Gets Worse”)–was that eye-opening concept that I might have to quit fighting, which, thankfully, isn’t the same thing as discontinuing to follow the extraordinarily helpful advice to “keep showing up,” or I would be more than ordinarily perplexed about the state of things.

So the remarkable thing–yes, I’m eventually getting around to it–is that yesterday I apparently quit fighting. I say apparently because it wasn’t premeditated. Yet while at the dashboard for my son’s blog I saw the named-but-never-posted-upon blog I created five years ago. Yep. Five years. Five years of fear, feeling it had to be perfect or it wasn’t worth doing. During those years life had first gotten harder from the outside and then it got harder from the inside. Ultimately I was only fighting myself. So the next thing I know I’ve created a new blog and instead of keeping that draft I just wrote from where I am today. And so here I am. It feels good not to be fighting anymore. At least not today, anyway!

Who knows? Maybe those words from the Serenity Prayer are finally beginning to penetrate my cerebral cortex? I can only hope and pray that I will continue to “keep on keeping” on as I learn how to live with the person I am, not the person I used to be or the person I wish I was but the person I am, the person God created me to be.

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
Amen.

Reinhold Niebuhr

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