"Maybe the most difficult stranger to welcome
is the one who lives inside us." -Mirabai Starr
I've been thinking about this quite a bit lately. I'm still, nearly 4 years post-cancer, having a difficult time welcoming the outside me into the inside me. I'm still a stranger to myself, in many ways. Yes, there are days when I know who I am, when I'm confident, self-assured, comfortable in my skin. But for the most part - I'm still my own stranger.
I teach my patients that time heals, that with all their struggles, as they become comfortable in the here and now, they will begin to make peace with their journey - wherever it takes them, if they desire. Because we have to find peace with our present before we can begin to move forward - or at least stop long enough so that we can see where forward is taking us.
So here I am - and I often wonder if the "C" stigma is still attached to me - if I am defective, contagious, rejected. Do I wear that "C" on my sweater, do I attach that to me, and use that as my tool to withdraw, step aside, stay in the back? What am I afraid of?
That stranger who lives within, is really the stranger who lives on the outside - I am at my best when I forget the stranger that has occupied my spirit.
Must make peace with this person - again.
Speaking of a friend: She became depressed with each milestone because she realized there was no going back to normal. She would never be “out of the woods.” Her life was unalterably changed and she couldn’t stand it.She was reading the book, A Gift from the Sea, by Anne Morrow Lindbergh, when she got the insight that she lived in the woods.The point was not to try to get “out of the woods” but to learn to live in the woods.Make peace with the uncertainty. Learn to navigate the woods.