For every woman who has struggled with illness, faced the loss of loved ones, questioned what it all means, believed more is happening than can be seen, celebrated accomplishments, and triumphed, the message is TRUST YOUR JOURNEY. Life gives us an endless variety of challenges. Each one of us is unique and, although our journey is not the same as anyone else’s, it is also shared by many. And none of us is alone in our journey — there are always others who have faced the same challenges.
Victoria Moran writes in her book Lit from Within, “Trust is believing that there is something else going on that we cannot fathom. It’s not fatalism or rolling over and playing dead. It’s experiencing life with the conviction that there is more to it than meets the eye.” Trusting is transformative, but to access its gifts we need to gather our courage and start the process.
Scott Ginsberg wrote an article on trust in which he listed daily practices for building trust, and I’d like to share a few with you. He starts with “Don’t be stopped by not knowing how.” Would we ever do anything if we waited until we knew exactly what we were doing before making decisions or starting a project? None of us is ever completely ready for a challenge, so we meet it by jumping into the situation and doing the best we can. If complete trust is asking too much then we can start by trusting as much as we can. This enables us to watch ourselves and observe changes. Michael Beckwith wrote this: “Don’t be in such a rush to figure everything out. Embrace the unknown and let life surprise you.”
Another daily practice is “Restore the equilibrium.” The scary part about trust is being asked to let go of our need to control. Although our culture applauds being in control, controlling behavior is usually a response to fear, panic, and feeling helpless. If we have faith in a Higher Power, it’s easier to let go because we know we are not doing anything alone. We do what we can and let God do the rest. We can let go of fear and trust that the way will be clear. Everything we need for our journey will come to us at exactly the time it is needed. There is an Arabian proverb that says, “Trust God, but tie up your camel.” Equilibrium is found in the balance in letting go and holding on.
Scott Ginsberg also suggests “Don’t be so hard on yourself.” Anything new takes practice, and practice is easier if we feel what we are doing is important. If we feel our journey has deep purpose then it is easier to trust. Buddha’s Little Instruction Book by Jack Kornfield says, “Praise and blame, gain and loss, pleasure and sorrow come and go like the wind. To be happy, rest like a tree in the midst of them all.” Since a tree doesn’t have hands, storms are not caught and held but pass through and move on. How different might we be if we followed this example?
“Don’t abandon the process just because it gets tough” is the last suggestion I’m sharing from Scott Ginsberg. It’s easy to define ourselves by the moment we are in. When we are struggling with the challenges of change, it can be hard to see the new self we are becoming. Even when we are not sure what is happening, we are still being transformed. Even when things are confusing and difficult, we can trust that we are learning something important. Even though we don’t know our part in the bigger picture, we can trust in the timing of our journey. And, when we let go of what is no longer useful, we open ourselves to the beauty and richness of our journey – wherever it takes us.
When we choose to trust our journey, we become the curators of our own contentment. We live in a heightened awareness of life’s abundance and develop a deep appreciation for all the good surrounding us, no matter what our immediate circumstances may be. We can trust that we will get where we need to go, be supported when we need support, say what we need to say, know what we need to know, and become all we can possibly become. Trusting our journey is a healing gift we can give ourselves.
Friends After Diagnosis is a safe place to share the challenges of our journey without judgement. We learn and grow together as we navigate life one day at a time. And together we remind each other that we are not alone. Supporting each other’s endeavors allows each of us to more fully trust our own journey. May we each honor the transformative process of trust, and know that all our needs will be met in the right time and place.
Until Next Time – Sylvia