Tuesday, May 31, 2016

My Stroke of Luck: On the Road to Recovery (3 of 3)

Taken a month after my mini-stroke.
With Tess, workout buddy and makeup artist
My husband once told me, "Mama, pag nagkakasakit ang tao, may dapat magbago." (Mama, sickness will prompt you to change). He left it there. I knew all along what he meant. Because he is Papadoms, he respected my time and space to make the change. Because I am Zarah Gagatiga, I have to experience a life threatening event to make the change.

I am in a period of adjustment. I can't say I am one hundred percent liking it. But, this is something I need to do. There are nights when I sleep with fear in my heart and no matter how hard I pray, the fear won't go away. It can be worse in the morning because I wake up with the same fear. It is the emotional and psychological aspect of surviving a stroke that gnaws at me. It is taking me a while to accept my vulnerability.

I know it has not been easy for my husband to accompany me on this road to recovery. I can be a drama queen. Really. But I think about his many sacrifices, his devotion to duty and his quiet endurance to take on life's hardships. This is no longer the time to act like a brat. I think about Zoe. How strong she has been. She saw me crumbling on a heap on the floor. She saw me rise up again and was there for me at the ER. She was practically the one who worked on my admission papers and medical registration in Makati Med. I share Nico's dreams and I wonder at how he could take things in stride. For one, he is in no rush to take on more subjects this summer and in the coming semester. He simply wants to run as the course dictates him so. That boy can listen to his heart. And he listens well.

So, I have to live. I need to live. I must be brave.

I have recently read somewhere that fear's purpose is to rob you of the joys of living a full life. Being afraid is close to not living at all. The other night, Zoe and I were talking about decision making. She explained to me her "calculations", her bases for arriving at a decision. That's it. That's that.

I know a change is imminent. My question to myself is this: what to lessen in my life now so I can enjoy it more? There are things that need to let go. Attachments bound and strung so deep that it needs to be cut. This not only about my workshops and speaking engagements. There is more to this than just handling a busy schedule. I heard a former co-teacher say that getting sick is a blessing because it is God's way to cleanse the spirit. This makes me think how healing could mean something else. It does not always mean being free of a physical ailment.

I will endure. Perhaps not as quiet as my husband's ways. I will be strong and yes, there will be days I will falter. I will to listen to my heart and to my body and allow them to run the course. It is time to be kind to myself.

There is so much grace to be had.

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