Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays’ take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘recovery

Small Difference

leave a comment »

Life is not as bad as it seems, and rarely as good as we might perceive. Frankly, I have this peculiar notion that the difference between best and worst outcomes is a much narrower range than we are groomed to believe.

There are abundant examples of both good and bad situations simultaneously playing out all over the world through the course of history. Sometimes they are occurring on opposite sides of the globe, but in varying degrees of intensity, good and bad things can happen in the very same place, even at the same time.

I’ve noticed in myself an increasing susceptibility to waves of gloom over news about the state of our planet and about the state of democracy. Each new report is picking up and adding to my gloom from the day before.

I have yet to master the same art for the news of good things in the world. I can’t seem to get the happy stories to compound into greater joy with each successive telling.

In my reality, the gap between the two is small, so resolving the discrepancy doesn’t need to be some Herculean effort. In the grand scheme of things, nurturing the positive is a very “do-able” feat.

Last night, Cyndie and I watched Carrie Fisher‘s “Wishful Drinking (2010) documentary one-woman show based on her memoir. Obviously, it triggered something that got me thinking about good and bad, and mental health. 

Hearing the way Carrie told her stories gave me the impression that she was a writer, which, in fact, she was. Maybe that is one reason the show resonated for me as much as it did. Of course, I am also a sucker for stories of recovery and self discovery.

A lot of her life stories sounded bad, although she delivered them with a dose of humor, and glimpses of moments that were good. I thought, we could all probably make our stories into a show like this. The difference however, is that hers comes across as something of an inside joke which we are all in on, because her life as a daughter of two celebrities and her iconic acting role in the movie “Star Wars” are public knowledge.

We hear her stories of situations we already know about, only from the actual inside perspective.

That aspect wouldn’t exist with my one-man show based on my non-celebrity memoir.

After the movie, I came downstairs from our loft and spotted this:

Really? Cyndie bakes amazing chocolate chip cookies on Tuesday, and a night later, pulls out some Oreos to eat instead.

I look at that picture, and all I see is good right next to bad.

In my perspective as a person seeking to manage a sugar addiction, the difference between the two is actually small.

.

.

Written by johnwhays

May 24, 2018 at 6:00 am

Key

leave a comment »

.

Words on Images

.

.

At Last

with 2 comments

After too many days of no improvement, we are finally seeing glimmers of the old Delilah we knew and were often irritated by. Funny, how perspectives change, and behaviors that came across as a nuisance when she was overflowing with canine energy can become a celebration after a long series of days of droopy, pained existence.

Delilah has regained a little spring in her step, and has flashed moments of youthful yearning to playfully bite and romp, quickly curtailed with reasonable restraint.

Just hearing her let loose with a full-body shake that flops her ears in the rapid tremolo pounding against her own head is of significance when the sound has been absent for so long.

It is like a fresh ray of sunshine after a long period of rain, which is also an apt description of the day we have been blessed with today.

Hello, fall colors!

.

.

Written by johnwhays

October 8, 2017 at 9:14 am

Successful Surgery

with 2 comments

We are happy to report that Cyndie’s surgery was all good yesterday. There were no complications in the 4 objectives of cleaning out the arthritis, removing a spur, cleaning up the rotator cuff, and reattaching the ruptured tendons.

The outpatient procedure allowed her to be home by the end of the day, where she immediately began experimenting with our variety of chairs and couch in search of a favored perch. Pain management was easy last night, as the nerve block hadn’t yet worn off and the whole arm down to the hand was without feeling.

Today will likely be a bit more challenging for her, we presume.

They had her strapped into the brace before she even woke up from the procedure. She will wear it for the next 6-weeks, except for taking showers.

Quite a fashion statement, don’t you think?

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Written by johnwhays

June 14, 2017 at 6:00 am

Recovering Slowly

with 4 comments

It’s a process. I’m still sad about the embarrassing outcome of our election, but some of the shock and traumatic stress is wearing off. The commodity of a good night’s sleep, which I hold dear, is possible again after several disturbing bouts of disruption. It is a mental illness I know all too well that leaves me wide awake at oh-dark-thirty with unhelpful thoughts running rampant.

I know depression. The events that played out to even allow the President-elect to be a choice in the end was depressing enough, but for the voting results to prove there are that many people in this country who would accept his rhetoric as deserving nearly sent me back to my darkest place.

How can I live with that? I live among them. How do I deal with this disturbing reality?

Love.

It’s all I can do. I know how I recovered from my life of depression. I will work my program. I will send love in every direction. I will strive to love the men and women who believe things with which I disagree. I will find a way to send love to people who find solace in hate and fear. I have fears, too, but we don’t fear the same things and we don’t respond to our fears in the same way.

Nothing is as exclusive and extreme as our minds are inclined to perceive. There is “both” where we see “one or the other.” We tend to be more similar to those with whom we disagree than we want to admit, especially in times of conflict.

People are inclined to inflate a point in order to make it. It’s too bad humans haven’t instead worked to develop a keener sense of detecting a point so there would be no need for the inflation.

dscn5467eSpend a little more time around horses and you can witness the art of keen perception. You can also come to discover the incredible power and reach of a heart-field.

Our horses help me to send love everyday. They are tapped in. We put the soccer ball out for them yesterday because the weather was nice and they were showing signs of being in a playful mood. Legacy spent the most time testing out the odd obstacle while the mares focused on their grazing, well placed in comfortable proximity to him.

Hunter expectantly waited for a turn.

They eventually moved over the hill and left the ball alone for a while. When we came back after lunch, the ball was all the way down the slope up against the fence, so someone had been playing with it again.

I’m following their example and letting my perceived obstacle be ignored for a while. When I reclaim my heart center and bolster my love beams, I can approach the situation again to see what happens when I show up.

I am not any less of a person as a result of what happens around me, unless I choose to react poorly.

After some faltering, I’m choosing love.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Written by johnwhays

November 12, 2016 at 9:47 am

Sending Love

with 2 comments

heart.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Written by johnwhays

November 11, 2016 at 7:00 am

Wondering Aloud

with 2 comments

Cyndie and I have recently found ourselves pondering the limitations of our ability to love someone out of their predicament. It gets downright frustrating to watch others destroy their own lives despite a wealth of loving family support desperately wanting to help.

Frustration Builds to Anger

I think part of the challenge for us is the struggle of overcoming anger that builds up in us from witnessing the neglect of self, and abuse of others, dished out by people in need who choose to ignore all common sense offers of assistance. By our own philosophy, we want to be sending a flood of love to all others, even if they are making us angry. That gets hard to do sometimes.

IMG_iP3072eCHAs a person who lived with a dysfunctional mindset of depression for many, many years, I recognize how self-focused a person with mental illness can become. I understand that the person with mental illness doesn’t logically perceive how much pain and sorrow they inflict on those who dearly love them, especially family. Heck, even if the message were to make it through, it could well be insufficient to inspire a change toward choosing to become healthy in response.

Yes, family seems to receive the brunt of our worst selves, even when they are the ones to whom we are most attached. Well, for that matter, even our own selves tend to become the target of our worst. That’s how these predicaments get started in the first place!

Cyndie and I understand that the only person we can change is ourselves. As a parent, it became one of the driving forces for me to want to become the healthiest I can be. I couldn’t force my children to love themselves and make healthy decisions, but I could make that a goal for myself. Doing so became an influence on my relationship with Cyndie. Our subsequent couples therapy and efforts to grow toward the healthiest possible relationship then imbued our household with that intentional energy.

I can’t say for sure that it is responsible for healthy choices our now grown children have demonstrated thus far in their lives, but I no longer see my past dysfunctional behaviors reflected back to me like I began to experience when they were young and I was ill.

Healthy Choice of Sending Love

The exercise that Cyndie and I talked about wanting to embrace last night is to emulate the confidence of our precious friend, Dunia, and not let our feelings of frustration and anger sidetrack our good intentions of wholeheartedly loving those dear to us who are not of a mind to love themselves. We want to send love with the fullest belief in the power of that love to make a healthy difference.

You see, doing so is an act of making us healthier. We can’t make others choose health. That is their responsibility. We can know we are honestly providing loving energy and by focusing on that, overcome the interference of frustration and anger over things we cannot control.

It doesn’t hurt to have a place like this blog where we can vent some extra frustration now and then. It allows us to let go of that which no longer serves and regain a balanced perspective in love.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Written by johnwhays

March 16, 2016 at 6:00 am