Standing in a Dinghy on Rough Seas (On Crutches)

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This week for me was full of both personal challenge and celebration, and it struck me that it’s a microcosm of how this whole year has been for most of us, if not all of us.

(And, I can imagine, with the recent presidential debate, death of Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the US President and his wife testing positive for COVID, California wildfires still raging, that we are all still dealing with a massive case of Emotional Inflammation.)

My challenge came when I missed a stair step and landed on my foot. Yes—ouch!

This happened to be a super-busy week for me, full of client calls and other responsibilities. I slowed down as best I could but it wasn’t enough. Had to cancel and rearrange a few things.

Now I have yet another “new normal” to figure out. As I write this, I’m in limbo as to what exactly is wrong with my foot, what recovery will involve, how long I will have to adapt to a whole new lifestyle.

It’s yet another manifestation of these intense times, where all of us are dealing with what one writer called “ambiguous loss”: “any loss that’s unclear and lacks a resolution.”

The pandemic has handed all of us a loss of a way of life. And now, my personal way of life is suddenly changed, as I hobble about on crutches. “Our new normal is always feeling a little off balance, like trying to stand in a dinghy on rough seas, and not knowing when the storm will pass,” writes Tara Haelle in Your Surge Capacity is Depleted—It’s Why You Feel So Awful.

Or in my case, trying to stand in a dingy on crutches on a rough sea, not knowing when the storm will pass!

The most frustrating thing this week was trying to get in to see a doctor. I don’t have regular insurance, and these medical conglomerates don’t know what to do with people who can, and want to, simply self-pay. One place would have had me give them all kinds of financial information (which I don’t have, such as pay stubs, since I’m self-employed).

Another put me in this loop: “Oh, you don’t have insurance? You must talk to our financial counseling department before you can schedule anything.”

I do so. Guy asks me 2 questions, sends me back to scheduling, only to repeat the cycle. “Oh you don’t have insurance? You must talk to our financial counseling department.”

“I just did.”

“I don’t have anything in your record.”

“Never mind,” I said and hung up. I’d already spent at least 50 minutes on the phone with them and other medical people, trying to get someone to simply order an X-ray. I finally found a way to schedule a telemed appointment with one of my current doctors. I’ve written this whole article while waiting for the doctor to show up, and I’m still in the virtual “waiting room.” (It’s been more than an hour and a half.)

I actually do have an insurance alternative, something called Samaritan Ministries, which is wonderful. Every month we pay each other’s medical bills. We can see any licensed healthcare provider we like. We pay the first $400 of every new “need” (diagnosis, basically), but after that the ministry may cover 100% (depending on your Plan). I love it, and recommend it. If you are interested, email me or check it out. If you join, please use my name as a referral. Only con: pre-existing conditions are not covered.

Anyway, to get to the celebration part: My husband and I paid off our first mortgage! (We still have a small one that we had to take out to pay for his Pennsylvania inheritance taxes.) Since we had a 10-year loan, the payment was large, so it’s wonderful to be out from under it.

To celebrate that, and to help me now that I have this injury, my husband decided to leave his part-time job (which just restarted this week). He is now officially retired and we are excited about his helping me with my business (and never having to deal with our state unemployment office again).

I’m also celebrating with my clients, as many are seeing great transformation and healing of sometimes long-standing issues. One, in my Healing Intensive program, sent me a long list of the improvements she has noticed in less than 3 months.

So here we are. Difficult and wonderful things happening, all in one week.

I suspect you have your own version of this, whether it’s over the past week, or month, or year, or . . .

The question is, which will capture our focus?

For me this week, will it be the joy and freedom of paying off the mortgage and seeing what new opportunities come my way? Or the ongoing hassle of this injury and the negatives involved? (The biggest one being, I can’t take my daily walks, one of the things that “drained my stress bucket” the most.)

Well, it’s a matter of choice, isn’t it? Just as it’s a matter of choice how we continue to navigate these times of unprecedented intensity. Every day brings new surprises, new challenges—and potentially, new joys and a resilience we didn’t realize we had.

As I wrote before, I choose to get curious rather than fearful or resentful, though I must admit both feelings were fully felt (and dealt with using  Healing Codes and my other methods).

Since I believe that God can and will bring good out of everything and anything, and that everything happens for a reason, I can ask questions like:

  • What lesson(s) do I need to learn from this injury? (One I am sure of: I need to slow down, get more rest.)

  • How might my life get better because of it? Will my husband learn to cook as I supervise him from my chair with foot elevated? Will my balance improve as I learn to navigate crutches? Will new muscles get a workout? (Muscles I didn’t realize I have are now sore.)

  • Will the Halo and c.Balance help speed my recovery, as the Halo did when Gene got third-degree burns on his foot a few months after we got the Halo? (He doesn’t even have a scar there now.)

When trying to deal with the medical hassles, I got curious about what other options I might have. Something occurred to me, I tried it, and it looks like it’s viable and will save me money.

When we get curious, it opens us up to our creativity. (Which is a Highly Sensitive Strength, by the way.) It opens us up to joy.

Have a joyful weekend and week, full of curiosity and creative solutions.

And if you need any help trying to “stand in a dinghy on rough seas,” check out my coaching packages at HealingCodesCoaching.com.

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