Does anyone else find that the older we get, the more ridiculous things seem to be? I’m sure it’s not just me.
Our whole architecture as herd-bound-yet-insular organisms is a program for inner struggle. It feels like living on one of those old school metal park merry-go-rounds. Gah! I want off. Jumping off, tumbling in the gravel, pretending I’m not going to vomit equals #adulting.
Stand up. Wipe off the dust.
“Dust it off,” we used to tell our preschool daughter. We forgot to say, “Now clench your jaw, roar, flee, freeze, or float away. Fake it ’til you make it little lady, it’s all going to be ok.”
Some days it’s pretty nice, right? Sweet sun is shining on her hair through the window this afternoon. She’s right over there, on the other side of the sound of my typing. I can see her and it makes my heart warm.
I work with people, I am a people, and I have my own people whom I work with. By that, I mean–I have my own posse of teachers and guides who help me recover from all the people-ing I do.
The word healer makes me flinch. There are reasons, and the foremost of those is that people who introduce themselves as Healers sometimes have not yet discovered that it is the Healed who do the majority (as in all) of the healing. We are there with out methods and our training and diligence, but it’s not us doing the healing.
We are supporting healing. And maybe, if you’re willing to indulge the idea, we resonate with those who are in the process of healing, who found their way to us, or maybe we found our way to them, and that is one of the coolest parts of what we refer to as healing.
As an aside, boy have I found myself in the wrong place for healing a time or two! You too? There are occasionally very poor fits. When I still held a private practice, I was not able to catch everyone who came my way. I feel only warm regard and mad respect for those who knew themselves well enough to move on to the next helper.
My oldest friend and I geeked out last week to the concept of Tutoring. No self-proclaimed, well-marketed, well-educated, well-monetized guru sits higher than your own inner guidance. We are our own gurus; our maps for success are already written.
Sometimes reclaiming has to take place. Sometimes it’s a full on archaeological dig. We’ve all been there.
So there are guides. Tutors. Healers. Etcetera. There are so many avenues to wellness. There are dead ends, too.
Where it gets a bit ridiculous, is when our fellow herd members decisively snip the menu to bits and strike it all up with highlighter. Uncovering the path to healing is up to one person, and that is the one who is seeking the healing. One size does not fit all. We all deserve the full menu.
Nurses see a lot, and oncology nurses see some things. Psychiatric nurses see some real weird things. (Weird does not always mean bad.) Wandering the halls of medicine, I’ve learned from my patients.
I’ve seen people accept traditional, evidence-based treatment and die. I’ve seen people decline treatment and die. I’ve seen people accept complimentary and alternative medicine and die. I’ve seen people accept indigenous medicine and die. I’ve seen people take it all and still lose the fight.
I’ve seen people die quickly, and I’ve seen people die slowly. I’ve seen people live. I’ve seen people suffer, and I’ve felt my heart wrench as they found ways to thrive. I’ve gulped down sobs of relief for so many people! Despite all odds, I’ve seen people make it.
I say it often; there are things we can measure, and there are things we cannot. Evidence matters. Best practices are the ones I want for myself and my family members. The rest of it matters, too. I’ve seen some things.
Know Thyself. Trust Thyself.
Seek and secure wise counsel. Follow your intuition. Trust there are no guarantees.
Then, before you judge the program that’s working for you, off of the reflective glance of another, steady your footing. Sometimes it’s important to let people know your business is not their business, especially in this digital era where we are all expert-gratis via google.
Sometimes it is freedom of movement we need, in order to find our way. Be shameless in taking that space, if you are working something through. Be gracious in giving that space, if you are supporting someone to heal.
Discretion and concern make good partners. We need to understand that each person has his or her people and methods. Your ways may not be their ways, and vice versa. It’s ok. Dust it off.
When we’re all trying to make heart gains, prevent or fight illness, and align toward health, we need to be careful about staying in our own lanes and in our own experiences. Lanes, or boundaries, are very important. We paint them wide and bright for a reason.
We’re here for a finite amount of time, every one of us. Keep the runway free of obstacles.
Prepare for flight.
• Ask. Nod. Listen and high five more.
• Sometimes, you’re going to walk away not quite understanding. Know that’s ok. It’s ok to smile in traffic from your own lane. You’re not going where the next guy over is going.
• Honor the evidence-base, flaws and all. Get in there and sift. Data is your friend. Some data is flawed. Don’t let fear paralyze you. Keep wise counsel.
• There is space for the East, the West, the Clinical, and the Indigenous.
• Elevate the classical and quantum mechanics.
• Ponder the carbon and the wonder, full menu.