Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Learning to take my own advice: Acceptance

Hi there. It's been about two weeks since I posted about my huge ball of stress manifesting into a huge ball of gunk in my lower left eyelid.  

There it is! Look, almost all better..... Gah. 

It's still gonna take awhile, now it's almost a sore from the outside instead of something icky brewing on the inside. I'm a lucky gal.... 

So, let's talk about the stress factor. Or when you're fighting a Funk of Depression. Something is bringing you down right? You don't like It. You want It to stop harshing your mellow. It's bringing you down and you're fighting It. 

Fighting's good, right? YES, AND... accepting It. 

You know what happens when you finally accept the existence of It?  You let go of the worry, stress, and funk of it. You wind up feeling a lot better. Let me sum up. 

There I was, stressing out about the eye, the stress that must've brought it up, stressing about the pain, stressing about how gross it must look, and therefore how I must look, stressing about going out into the world with Eyegor the Horrible and feeling like I must've looked like Quasimodo. I was trying to ignore It, I was trying to fight It, I was trying to take care of It, I was trying to deny It. Frickin' Eyegor wasn't having it. "I'M HERE AND YOU CAN'T IGNORE ME!" I felt like a nutcase. 

I dunno what happened. I blogged about it. I felt like crap, but the next day when I woke up, I worked on a project, I went out into the world and gave a friend a massage. Something just clicked. Eyegor was there and was in it for the long haul and I just accepted It. That day it felt like a literal weight had lifted off my shoulders. Despite the weight of Eyegor pulsing in my eye, I laughed and went about my business. You can call it surrender, and you know what? It very much felt empowering, it didn't feel like being defeated. 

As I was driving away from the massage and heading towards a walk with my wonderful friend Victoria, something felt different. This is gross, but, my eye started oozing out gunk. Yeah, it was nasty. Yeah, it was while I was driving. Yeah, I was totally stoked. There's me, excited and grossed out at every stoplight sopping up the Nasty. Finally I just pulled over at a nearby park and just finished getting the gunk out. I can only imagine what people were thinking if they caught a look at me. "Why is that woman smiling so much and making icky faces at the same time? What is she doing with her eye? Is she? Oh my god! GROSS!"

I've been feeling a hell of a lot better since then. Like I've said before, I take these symptoms from the body, (ginormous stye, horrible neck spasm, lung infections, the flu like you've never had it before), as a sign that something is off, and that people need to see it like that as well and take a frickin' break. 

In talking with my friends Jan and Kim and how they deal with stress I came away with this: If you let yourself continue to stress, all it does is lead you down the rabbit hole of stress. It serves no purpose in life accept to further add feelings of guilt, depression, more stress, and continued yuckiness. (the yuckiness was my choice of words, not Jan and Kim's). Letting one's self remain in a prolonged, never-ending cycle of stress, worry, doubt, and guilt brings you down and never lifts you up. Gad, I feel a little yucky just thinking about it. Oof. 

What I'm trying to say here, is that you first need to accept that you have this problem, (whatever it is you Fellow Stressed-Out People, you), and just let go of It. I'm not saying it's an easy thing to do. How can it be an easy thing to do when you're in a maelstrom of stress? But you know what? It is. Accept it as fact and let it go. A shitty thing is happening to you right now. It doesn't mean you're a bad person. It just means it's happened/ is happening. It's there, it exists. Let that acceptance of it take the weight off instead of add to your stress. It's sometimes not very easy to change one's perspective, believe me, I know. (I KNOW IT). We all have our special crosses to bear for any set of circumstances in our lives, but let me tell you - that acceptance will take you further than you think is possible. It will relieve you. 

I think the next step is learning to take back control of ourselves. I'll save that for another post. You may have realized, I'm no mental health professional, just an Average Patty Jean of the World. I'm learning as I'm experiencing, and sharing as I'm grokking. (If you don't know what Grokking means, you need to read A Stranger in a Strange Land. It's all cool, I still grok you). 

I would just like to take this moment to thank my little feline best friend, Bugaboo, for being a very helpful muse. She sat right between me and the computer the whole time. She's a very helpful kitty. I'm very lucky that she chooses to supervise me when she's not supervising her mom, Trina