This sounds quite harsh, but I always believed hOpe to be a weak person’s pie-in-the-sky false dream. Something that I wasn’t interested in because of my pride, and my belief that I didn’t need any help, from anyone or anything.
I am a survivor of an alcoholic / co-dependent family, religious abuse, depression, cervical cancer and alcohol addiction. Who would have thought it would be valley fever to bring me to my knees? Talk about feeling hOpe-less.
For most of my 55-years on the planet, I have relied on my sharp mind, strong will and my ability to persevere. I’ve never shied away from hard work or looking within to find answers and relief.
Luckily, I’ve worked with several really good therapists over the years, who helped me walk through many traumatic experiences and limiting beliefs. Without those gifted people, I would not have made it this far, and I definitely wouldn’t be finding my way through the challenges of valley fever.
nOte: Valley Fever cases continue to increase, and thankfully National Public Radio (NPR) recently aired a story about it. Check it out here. Also, the Denver Post published an article about thousands of people being effected by Valley Fever. (Thank you, Jill, for the heads up on both of these items!)
When I realized I couldn’t outwit or outplay valley fever, I set out to learn some things about hOpe. Yes, the “Queen of Nothing Is Too Much For Me”, admitted that I need something more. Working hard and persevering isn’t cutting it, so hOpe it is.
My Google search brought me two very important things – a very cool definition of hOpe, and one amazing poem.
Definition by Dr. Barbara L. Fredrickson:
“[h]ope literally opens us up…[and] removes the blinders of fear and despair and allows us to see the big picture [, thus allowing us to] become creative and have [b]elief in [a] better future”. Pretty beautiful, don’t you think!?
Now, on to the amazing Emily Dickinson poem:
“Hope” is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all.
And sweetest in the gale is heard
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I’ve heard it in the chillest land
And on the strangest sea
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.
Needless to say, I have slowly fallen in love with hOpe. I’ve also fallen in love with little birdies, and wispy clouds and the belief that I am slowly getting better. And Mother Nature keeps showing me how to hOpe-mOre. I’ve watched this cactus grow over the last month. Isn’t it amazing? I really can’t look at it without smiling.
So I will keep painting, and eating well and doing my physical therapy, and trust that hOpe will light my way. And I will gladly be hanging onto hOpe’s hand.
The Hopeful Spirit bracelet is one of Kelly Rae Roberts creations. Thank you Kelly Rae!
Over the years, I’m afraid I have left hOpe standing out in the rain all by herself many times. No more! Here is a reminder for those of us who think we need to do it all on our own:
I have fought for a long time to find a way to shine and fly in my life, and as hard as this part of the journey has been, with hOpe’s help, I have found my wings.
With all the tragedies in the world today, those of us who can, need to get up each morning with some wind beneath our wings. hOpe is that gentle breeze that brings fresh air, and lightness, and the possibility of healing and recovery. May everyone who needs to hOpe-mOre, feel the light kiss of hOpe today.
lOts Of lOve, vickiO