“She reasoned that an unfulfilled passion was burdensome, and that one must know how to leave it behind in order to let another passion take its place.”
As soon as I read that passage about Madame Merleau, a character in Hélène Grémillon’s novel, The Confidant, I knew that it would make a perfect starter for a blog post, and perhaps even a mantra, of sorts.
An important skill to develop in order to live well with a chronic illness is flexibility. Not only in the way you do things, but also in way you honour your passions. Your body may not work as well as it did pre-illness, which may mean bidding adieu to a passion. Or it could mean letting another passion take its place. Why not pretend that you are back in grade one. There on your desk, are several brand new bricks of Plasticine. Ooooo, you could hardly wait to begin creating with them. Do you remember the smell? And those delicious colours that were not yet all mixed together? More importantly, do you remember what you did when something you formed didn’t turn out the way you wanted? No recriminations; you pulled it apart and began again. When your creation was done, it may not have been perfect, but it was done to the best of your abilities.
Are you able to apply the Plasticine Principle to your passion – reforming it so that it is pleasing to the eye, and to your heart, where passion grows? (In my previous post, Pfizer’s First RA Blogger Summit – Feeding Body and Mind, I told you about Seamus Mullen, a chef who is passionate about cooking; RA has pushed him into reshaping how he cooks, so that he is able to continue doing what feeds his soul, and his patrons.)
Or if it’s not possible to modify your passion, are you able to allow another passion to take shape, even if it’s not executed perfectly?
Flexibility in thinking allows you to move beyond the stuck state of “I can’t follow my passion, therefore my life is over,” and move into a more resourceful, productive and enlivening state.
If you find you’re swirling around in a stuck state, you would benefit from learning and regularly using stress undressing techniques. Not only do they help you release your negative thoughts and feelings, but they also increase your resilience, allowing you to weather the flare-ups and other negative events that occur in life. Take the fire out of your joints and put it into a passion!
If you’re interested in learning more, please contact me for a no-obligation chat, either by email, or by calling 604-507-9970.