I’ve been thinking about how difficult injury and illness can be — especially if they are chronic and ongoing. The ways our body can limit our activity, our access, and the ways it can keep us from things we love, the overwhelming need it has to be cared for. I have chronic pain and fatigue, for various reasons. It keeps me from fully experiencing my life in the ways I want to.
I was reminded of this difficulty, this grief, this morning. Eric was taking Ringo hiking, running, and because of Sam’s back issues, he can’t go. Eric put him in with me while I was meditating, and Sam spent the whole time lying by the closed door, intermittently whining. I feel so sad for him because he loves getting to go so much, but his body just won’t allow it right now. And since we’ve been working with this injury since January, it’s becoming clear this might be as good as it gets for him — two walks a day, sometimes almost a total of 4.5 miles, but no more 8-15 mile hikes, no more running.
It’s all mixed up for me with the loss of Obi and Dexter, with my dad’s recovery from his stroke, with the struggles of friends who also live with chronic illness and pain, and the ways all our longings to move and not suffer are limited. Sure there’s help to be had, remedies and support that can lessen our discomfort, but there will be no miracle, no return to being exactly as we were before.
There’s so much grief around that. I think sometimes we forget that when working with our various obstacles. We forget that it’s not just physical, not just our bodies but our hearts are broken too. We need to allow space for that to heal as well.