Picture: Ricky Reston Dreamstime Stock Photos

 Jan 2011……… I was hunched over in pain in front of my gastro-consultant. I believed I was 7.5st weight. I looked and spoke like an 85 yr old rather than the 55yr old me. I’d been visiting him over the previous ten years with increasing levels of pain and bowel problems, especially bad in the last two years. He referred me for an immediate there-and-then scan. Twenty minutes later I was back, his registrar was there, and I knew ‘Enough is Enough. I’m done with fighting this’.

That evening I was admitted as an emergency patient, and left three weeks later having had life-saving surgery and fantastic medical care in Belfast City Hospital. My post-op weigh-in revealed this truth – I actually weighed 5.5st. Even though family and friends had expressed serious concern many times about my weight, I kept rebutting with ‘Well, I’m 7.5st, I’m fine.

I had been having bowel and gastro problems following radiotherapy in my bowel area for a non-bowel cancer ten years earlier. In agreement with my consultant I’d been managing my pain and symptoms, with regular visits to him. He’d always given me the option of surgery, but I kicked back, believing it would make matters worse. ‘No, I’ll manage this myself’. The truth of the matter: I was determined to control this ‘thing’ myself. Ask for or accept help? Nope! That would be a sign of weakness. A lack of control.
How Long More?
But In that moment of severe, debilitating pain and exhaustion at the hospital, how long more was I going to go on, allowing myself to live in pain, simply because I wanted to be in control? I’d reached the bottom of my resilience bowl. In that shift, I saved my life. My fear of releasing the need to control was literally killing me.

And here’s the thing. Along with the natural fear of the surgery and the unknown, I can now admit to an enormous sense of relief. Something was going to be done about my problem. I could just let go, release the fear, stop trying to hold on so tight to the control. Whatever came next couldn’t possibly be any worse than the previous couple of years’ problems.

I’m happy to report it’s been a lot better. Not problem free. But I’m healthy, happy and active, leading a regular life. Loving and enjoying my husband, cats, business, friends, garden…. I could go on.
The moral of this story comes in a question: How often do we spend our life trying to gain control over something where we simply do not have control?

How About You?
Sometimes it’s easy to get caught in a situation. We get so tied up in the wanting to control the situation, that we lose sight of the fact that it’s time to just release and let go, or to ask for and accept help.

And You? Have you got snarled up in trying to control something you can’t? If so, consider that it’s time to stop, release and just let go. Instead, save your life. I’m not just referring to medical matters here. Consider situations in your life. Time is whizzing by. Why struggle?

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With blessings ‘til next time.
© Dancing Leopards Ltd 2015