Thursday, January 14, 2010

Surrender (Burns Sisters)

January 14, 2010
The Wisdom of Surrender
Relying on Others

Most of us pride ourselves on our self-sufficiency. We like to be responsible for taking care of ourselves and pulling our own weight in the world. This is why it can be so challenging when we find ourselves in a situation in which we have to rely on someone else. This can happen as the result of an illness or an injury, or even in the case of a positive change, such as the arrival of a newborn. At times like these, it is essential that we let go of our feeling that we should be able to do it all by ourselves and accept the help of others.

The first step is accepting the situation fully as it is. Too often we make things worse either by trying to do more than we should or by lapsing into feelings of uselessness. In both cases we run the risk of actually prolonging our dependency. In addition, we miss a valuable opportunity to practice acceptance and humility. The ego resists what is, so when we move into acceptance we move into the deeper realm of the soul. In needing others and allowing them to help us, we experience the full realization that we are not on our own in the world. While this may bring up feelings of vulnerability, a deep feeling of gratitude may also emerge as we open to the experience of being helped. This realization can enable us to be wiser in our service of others when we are called upon to help.

It takes wisdom and strength to surrender to our own helplessness and to accept that we, just like every other human being, have limitations. The gifts of surrender are numerous. We discover humility, gratitude, and a deepening understanding of the human experience that enables us to be that much more compassionate and surrendered in the world.

A quick follow-up on my doctor visit of a month ago, to get the results of the blood and urine tests I took - suffice it to say I was more than a bit worried about the outcome... but everything actually turned out okay...

After being on the blood pressure medicine for four weeks, my blood pressure was perfect - yay! My blood sugar was great, which was a huge whew!... as diabetes runs in my family - my cholesterol was on target too (169... recommended is below 200), another relief. My calcium and Vitamin D were both a bit low, so she suggested supplements of both - also, I showed borderline-hypothyroidism (low), and she felt a thyroid medication to shift my metabolism back where it should be was indicated. Interestingly, I have felt much more energy since beginning the pills (lowest dosage, once a day), which is a nice change of pace - I think that's helped balance my emotional peace of mind as well...

I still need to schedule appointments for a mammogram, a bone density test, a colonoscopy and a chest x-ray (because of mom's pulmonary issues) - I've been involved in the planning stages of a busy music weekend here in South Florida... but I promise to... what, Susan?... follow through!... and will make those calls first thing next week... :-)

SONG: Surrender by Annie Burns

BOOK: Small Wonder: Essays by Barbara Kingsolver

POEM: Primary Wonder by Denise Levertov

Days pass when I forget the mystery.
Problems insoluble and problems offering
their own ignored solutions
jostle for my attention, they crowd its antechamber
along with a host of diversions, my courtiers, wearing
their colored clothes; cap and bells.
And then
once more the quiet mystery
is present to me, the throng's clamor
recedes: the mystery
that there is anything, anything at all,
let alone cosmos, joy, memory, everything,
rather than void: and that, O Lord,
Creator, Hallowed One, You still,
hour by hour sustain it.

QUOTE: "We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open." ~ Jawaharlal Nehru


  1. Oh, glad you're okay!

    It turns out I'm way worse at follow-through than I thought. So I hope it's otherwise going well for you, haha.

  2. Hey, Amy ~

    I do appreciate your concern... and am feeling and doing much better, since I received good news on some medical fronts I didn't expect - the next steps are scheduling the other tests, which I'm choosing to view as maintenance rather than alarmist (fingers crossed!)...

    You are too funny! - actually, I'm sh*tty at follow-through as well, which is why I chose it for my Word of the Year. It's all about the learning and growing (ack, do I have to?!?) - otherwise, I would have picked Sleeping, Reading or Music-Loving (I pretty much rock those... :-)

  3. I vote for music and day=dreaming/planning vacations I may never take...Aloha!! Kate in Wellyworld

  4. Hey, Kate ~

    All worthwhile pursuits, my friend - you've actually been doing quite a bit of traveling lately!