When I woke up this morning, I knew this: I was suffering some kind of setback with my knee and I was afraid to find out what the orthopedist would say when I visited him at 4 p.m.
About three weeks ago, feeling on a healing upswing, I disembarked from a very late PATH train into Newark Penn Station and had two minutes to catch my train to Point Pleasant. I was meeting my dear cousins for lunch and the next train wasn’t for two hours. Missing this would have blown the day. So I ran, suitcase in tow, across the station and up an escalator. I was relieved to board just as the conductor signaled to shut the doors.
While the lunch was delightful, my relief was short-lived. In the days that followed, it became clear something was off. Pain was coming back. Stairs were harder when they had just gotten easier. Denial. Denial. Denial.
I continued physical therapy because none of that hurt. It felt good. My physical therapist is very astute and compassionate. The knee was getting stronger, but yes, I had done something to it. But what?
Back to this morning. Anticipating my own angst, I made sure to follow my routine. Morning pages and coffee at my favorite spot. And here’s what came pouring out:
I fully accept that whatever happens here is for my greater good. I do. From best- to worst-case scenario. Period.
Everything I’d learned along my spiritual journey of the last decade came in and asked to be paid heed. Acceptance. No attachment to outcome. Just acceptance.
Out of the fog, into the clear. Fog. Clear. Fog. Clear. And on it goes. I kind of like this rhythm.
I have been praying to get my body back. With the physical and emotional turmoil I’ve experienced this year, I feel like I’d be so much better equipped to work through the mental stuff if I could pound an elliptical machine into submission. It’s happening now. Slowly. I am being called to patience. Again. Good God. I know, not my most sterling virtue.
I have, the past few days, been railing at Kevin for daring to die, for being so prevalent in my thoughts, wondering why it isn’t enough that I loved him so well in life. Why still here? Today, in my Morning Pages, this:
I am blessed to have known him. Blessed he is with me. Blessed. Blessed to have loved like that. Blessed. Blessed.
Then, in what I can only describe as his voice channeling through me, this:
Make peace with yourself, Nancy. With all of it. Don’t ask me to release you. Release yourself.
I got off the PATH train in Manhattan this afternoon. On the same train was a man, maybe late 50s, who was walking very slowly with a cane. I notice these things now. I empathized in my mind. As I walked out of the train and the doors closed behind me, I saw he tried to get out, got stuck and fell. He was frightened, but there was a closed door between us and I couldn’t do anything. He was quickly surrounded by helpful onlookers and eventually police officers. I wiped away a tear as I continued on my way.
My orthopedist extracted fluid from my knee. Fun needle (not). Injected some cortisone.
Healing. Breathing. Here we go.