One of the most difficult things about a serious diagnosis is that it displaces us from our “life as we knew it” to a terrible, scary unknown world that, for many, has life or death consequences. Whether because of symptoms or medication or even having to relocate to be closer to a treatment center or healthcare team, we can feel completely uprooted and at sea – strangers in a strange land. Or, even if we remain where we lived “before,” we might find that the people in our lives rotate out as the strain and stress of chronic illness and pain alter relationships, often for the worse.
I felt like this when I was diagnosed with lupus and had to stop most of the activities I’d enjoyed up to that point. I lost friends. I felt isolated and, in every sense, “displaced.”
But although my life was turned upside down, my faith never wavered. And it is this that, I think, is the key to controlling the uncontrollable, to finding a new “home” in the world – and to moving ahead spiritually and emotionally.
Our Lord, the center of my faith, never left me. He became “home” for me, and my faith was my root system. From that place of supreme comfort and encouragement, other things grew. Friends who were strong and compassionate. Ways to still make use of gifts, even if lupus restricted me mightily.
Was the world, my world, smaller than before? Well, I suppose you could say it was. But it was greater, too, because I learned about what was possible in an impossible situation. I learned about grace, and the potent, powerful importance of the Resurrection.
Yes, I learned, grew, shined – and I’m still at it!
Life is full of change, even if you are completely healthy for a long period of time. We will be buffeted, at times, and in calmer seas at others. But there is no need to worry, and no need to feel as if you don’t have a “place,” a purpose.
Jesus, the center of your life and joy is there – and you are home!
Blessings for the day,