Acceptance is the Key

March 28, 2013

Tonight, I am telling a story with the help of some passages from the young adult book, The Next Full Moon, by Carolyn Turgeon.

In the first one, replace "Ava" with "I."

Okay, so I haven't had a completely "magical transformation"-my illnesses aren't cured, I don't have a full-time job, I'm still single, etc., but my life has been a whole lot calmer since I accepted that my exhaustion is going to return.  A couple of posts ago, I talked about how I was trying to accept my periods of exhaustion and my life has gotten a lot better because of it.  My therapist often says that resistance causes suffering and I am believing her more and more.  Now that I am not resisting my exhaustion, I do not feel as frustrated-instead of viewing my tiredness as something that I must fight, I view it as more of a relationship that I must honor by taking naps and not forcing myself to do as many activities.  The funny thing is, now that I have accepted it, I have actually had more energy!  I think a big part of the reason is that by accepting my situation, I haven't been as anxious lately.  Anxiety can really make one tired!  This has proven to me the power of acceptance and I truly am beginning to believe that no matter what, everything will be okay.
 I was becoming so anxious and panicky a few weeks ago, because I didn't want life to go on if I was always going to be so tired.  I hadn't yet realized that my tiredness would not last forever-it comes and goes.  Even more importantly, I hadn't yet realized that even if my tiredness did last, everything would be okay if I could just learn to accept it.  Once I accepted my energy level, then I could do something about it and I actually did.  One, I am taking better care of my body-I make sure to take a short nap almost every day and I haven't been socializing quite as much.  I'm still social, but the more relaxed attitude has definitely helped.  Slowly, I am trying to let go of my need to be the perfect superwoman.  Two, I had an honest talk with my new doctor about my energy level and we decided to try some things to counteract it.  First, he got me tested to see if I had a thyroid problem and to my surprise I don't.  It turns out that I am really healthy, which really is good news.  Secondly, he lowered one of my medications and I think that's what did the trick!  The medication is Zyprexa and besides weight gain, it is also known to cause drowsiness.  I didn't think reducing it would produce that big of a difference, but I have really noticed a change in myself over the past few weeks.  I feel apprehensive about my increase in energy, so I am still taking things slowly, but I am hopeful.  Cautiously optimistic.  I have actually had enough energy and motivation to clean several parts of the house, so that is a step in the right direction.  People sometimes say to not have expectations, so you won't be disappointed-well, that is very hard to do, but I am trying.  I do feel like something inside me has changed lately and I like it.  I am handling problems with more grace and I am becoming better at using my DBT skills.  Everything is going to be okay.  I think I am beginning to believe it, because I am seeing it-I had also worried and gotten panicky about seeing a new doctor, but I prepared for it in advance and I had a productive and positive session with him.  Everything is going to be okay.  Everything.  I might always have to take naps.  I might always only be able to work part-time.  I might not get disability.  I might stay single.  But everything will be okay.  Life will not always be easy, but with acceptance, I know that life will always be worth living.

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