10 Perks of Being 36 (and sick)

October 15, 2015 | Posted in: Chronic Illness and body image, Chronic illness and relationships, chronic illness; support, Parenting and Chronic Illness

  1. You’ve figured out by now there’s no time to waste. These kids you made are growing up fast and there’s nothing you can do about it. They don’t really care if you like it or not. You know that there’s no promise of tomorrow. You’ve got one chance to make this life count and you fully intend on MAKING IT COUNT.
  2. You only have so many spoons a day and you’ve learned to use them wisely. (Translation- You only have so much energy and you know to use it on the really important stuff. If you’ve never read the “The Spoon Theory” on Chronic Illness, check it out. It’s good and insightful stuff.) This means you don’t waste your time trying to be everything to everyone because you can’t be. Don’t nobody got spoons for that.
  3. You know that being not-hot isn’t the worst possible thing that could happen to you. Sure, you’d love to be a size four again and maybe you will be. But for now, your eyes are fixed on the prize before you— getting through this day, being the woman that God has called you to be, honoring him in all that you say and do, rejoicing in all the wonderful things that he’s giving you and rescuing others on his behalf. Who wants to waste time whining about what was?
  4. You have some super-awesome, really mature, self-actualized, funny, supportive friends. Maybe in your twenties you have a lot of “friends” that are a bit competitive and unsure of who they are but by the time you’re pushing forty this has all fallen off. And maybe if you’re busting energy at the seams you are able to nurture many relationships that aren’t especially meaningful or supportive but when you’re sick, those get weeded out pretty quickly and what you have left is nothing short of amazing.
  5. You feel no pressure to worship the agenda-god. That I-must- be- busy- to- be- important and have a meaningful life thing that plagues our world falls off when you’re sick. You value rest. You do what you can and are genuinely thankful for it. You feel no need to schedule every minute of your life and simply enjoy each moment as it comes.
  6. You know that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And oddly enough you start noticing that some of the most beautiful people you’ve ever seen are in cancer centers, nursing homes, your own home, your own heart, and life and will never ever grace the cover of a magazine.
  7. You experience gratitude for things you never noticed in your twenties. Maybe you were too busy to notice, too healthy and spoiled to care but now you are sincerely deeply grateful for any life experience that you are able to be present for and enjoy. You don’t take any day, any treatment, any freedom that our country provides for granted— at least you try not to because you are acutely aware of how many lack what you enjoy. You spend more and more of your time praying about how to bring what you have to others.
  8. You laugh more. You’ve figured out that Proverbs wasn’t lying and it DOES do the heart good like a medicine. It does usher light into dark rooms and remind you that good always wins. It DOES help you forgive, let go, believe again and press on, and so why not? You laugh.
  9. You know that without God you are nothing and with him there’s nothing you cannot do. This one took you a while, but now that you know, it’s like the shackles have been cut from your feet. In any situation now you know that you only have to be obedient and then sit back and watch the salvation of your God. This is an adventure you wouldn’t trade for anything in the world because your God is always faithful and very creative.
  10. You’re learning to love and be loved. You thought you knew this for so long but what you really knew was how to give all you had to others while keeping them at arms length. Sick doesn’t let you do that. Sick rips away all your defense mechanisms and all of your hiding. It leaves you standing butt naked in the middle of the room— and it’s right there, butt-naked and totally dependent you find yourself LOVED and totally accepted. That one sucked, but your glad you didn’t skip it.

 

So what about you? What are the perks of being _______ and ________?

 

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8 Comments

  1. Jill
    October 16, 2015

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    Love this! Prayers continuing for you, my friend.

    • Stacey Philpot
      October 16, 2015

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      You’re my favorite, friend. Thanks for being you!

  2. Robin Lee
    October 16, 2015

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    Well done. Well learned.

  3. Kelly S
    October 17, 2015

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    Stacey, you are the voice in the wilderness. You make a space for others to lock arms with you and walk the hard journey together. Thank you for locking arms with me! #FridayFive

    • Stacey Philpot
      October 17, 2015

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      Thank you, Kelly! Already looking forward to next #FridayFive

  4. Brooke
    October 18, 2015

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    Illness definitely lends some great perspective. Whenever I get frustrated at my lungs, I realize how much better I have it than some.

    • Stacey Philpot
      October 18, 2015

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      Yes! And I DO get frustrated with my body and then I remember that it’s not the enemy- in fact, it’s working pretty hard for me!

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