|there is always a light at the end of the tunnel....|
How does that make sense?
Just as fear, anger, and hate come together in pairs and threesomes, faith, happiness, and love go together and breed each other.
As I reflected on this past year leading up to the new Jewish Year, Rosh HaShana, I remembered some of my toughest moments on my Cancer Journey. I realized that my most painful experiences were when I allowed fear and anger in to chip away at my core. The darkest moments were times when I felt weak and vulnerable, fear was at its height, anger reared its ugly head, and worst of all was when those emotions consumed me to the point of blocking out my hope, my happiness, and even my love. When you're scared, what is the one thing you need most? Reassurance. You need to know that everything will be okay which is often expressed or felt with a hug, a caress, or a kind word yet when fear takes over it can easily be expressed or translated into a negative act resulting in the opposite of what we need most. During my journey with cancer, I witnessed this phenomenon over and over again... I saw it at the hospital, in the clinic, in on-line support groups and I experienced it myself too. One of the things I feared was feeling pain and nausea. The anxiety on the drive over to the hospital each week was enough to make me vomit. Working my way up to a treatment; fearful and sad inevitably led to a more painful prick of the needle and with time maybe even worse blood test results. Chemotherapy was possibly the most intimidating test I've had to face and there were moments when my fear and anger consumed me. Those moments, saturated in fear and anger, were my most painful moments and also the ones I'd most like to avoid experiencing in my future; in sickness or in health.
Giving yourself over completely to faith means completely letting go of fear. It's not simple at all! For me, faith is G-d and my beliefs. For some that might be, A Higher Power, or Mother Nature. It doesn't matter - it's unblocking that control-center in your soul, your heart, and your mind and relinquishing all fears, doubts and problems and letting love take over. It will inevitably lead you directly to spiritual growth and happiness. ALL OF THIS is extremely difficult especially when you're not dying tomorrow or any time soon. It's all the more difficult to "let go" when there's no reason to. I've learned that the ONLY way to plough through all the negative feelings and emotions that hide out inside of my heart and go beyond the range or limits of those fears and pain, anger and hate is to realize this very simple thing: no one can make me happy or sad and things don't "happen" to me. I choose my response, emotions, and feelings and these are the ONLY things I have control of. The only person you can change is You. The only person You control is You and nobody but You.
I am not afraid. I choose to love... even the seemingly "unlovable". (This is not the same thing as, "love your enemies and pray for those who curse you" from the Christian bible.) I'm not making the suggestion that you give in or show affection to enemies and lie down for a threat to mow you over. On the contrary. I refuse to let the negativity from those bad things permeate my life. Love and happiness, as weapons, are the rubber and the glue that bad things bounce off of and stick to. That adversity, that disaster, and those hard times or those bad, contradictory people will literally bounce off of the suit of armor that is made up of the layers upon layers of love, happiness, and faith. Overcoming resentment and hate is the way to clean up the emotional debris which is the absolute greatest obstacle to happiness and inner health. If you can clear away that so-called debris, the calm, the emotions you feel will actually inoculate you and safeguard you from anything. It's almost like being immortal. Indestructible. Impermeable and airtight to any assault of the psychological kind.
If you choose to react to the difficult situations with the same gusto, the same embrace and moving-right-along attitude, many people will be caught off guard and they may not know how to react to you. I've noticed that even the most bitter and difficult people eventually succumb to methodical loving acts and regular (genuine) smiles and kindness. So too are pain and fear. Hate, pain, and fear are eventually tamed when confronted with love, and joy and while many people are confused and unable to understand such emotions at such times, it's something that they cannot take away from me because I own those. Emotions cannot be taken. So what about true sadness in this world like tragedy, loss, illness and death? Even those things can be tamed by love and faith. No person has the ability to control the time or date, only I can choose the mood, the air, and the character of what and how I leave this world. THAT is why love is the ultimate element in life because it's indestructible and it truly and indefinitely does conquer all. It lasts forever and when used generously and soulfully... it lasts forever, even long after we are gone.