I watched the film Jojo Rabbit this week (I would highly recommend it!) and there is a part where the characters share part of a poem by Rilke called ‘Go to the limits of your longings’. Here is the verse.
Let everything happen to you; beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.Rainer Maria Rilke
It really struck me. It actually brought a tear to my eye. I am having a hard time at the minute. I am still in a lot of pain and still waiting for a CT scan. I am scared that the surgery hasn’t worked. I am scared that I will never live a pain free life and I am so, so tired.
I also have lost work, my radio show is on hold for the foreseeable future. I left my main job in January, I think I was just so fed up and scared of letting my team down as I knew I was having yet another surgery. I was having issues with a manager and just felt so down about myself and my job. The job I was meant to start in April has faded away due to corona and now I have no work and I just don’t know what I’m doing with my life.
I feel like someone has a voodoo doll of me. I keep trying so hard to overcome problems but every time I bat one away, another problem replaces it. It has been nearly 7 years since my first surgery. I thought it was going to solve all my health issues, and in many ways my ostomy did. It rid me of the symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis that had ruined my life for years. But unfortunately for me, it also brought a new set of problems.
It is getting to me. My surgery recovery ran straight into corona lockdown and so it feels like I haven’t really been out or done anything since January. And now I live in constant fear that my hernia is back or that there are further complications. I am still taking pain killers every day, I am in so much pain and it is getting me down.
I just feel like I have lost all confidence. I don’t know who I am anymore. I don’t know what I am or where my place in the world is. I feel so lost and adrift. It is scary, I can feel myself slipping backwards into that pit of despair. I am struggling to pull myself out of bed. Partly due to the pain, but also mentally. I have very little to actually get up for. No work, no social life, no certainty in anything.
And then this quote. “Let everything happen to you; beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.”
It reminded me of another saying; “everything will be ok in the end, if it’s not ok, then it’s not the end”.
We have little control of some things in our lives, there are certain things that will happen to us that are completely beyond our control. And the only option we have is to let everything happen to you, to say yes to the opportunities that come to us. Some of those things will be beautiful, some will fill us with terror. All we can do is keep going.
No feeling is final
No feeling is final. This is such an important thing to remember. I had something happen this week. I was really embarrassed. I was called out on my reaction to something and it made me feel really stupid. In that moment, I felt so humiliated, my face was burning, I felt sick and silly. It felt HUGE. Like I wouldn’t get over it. It made me want to hide away. In reality, once I spoke to someone about it, it lost it’s power and I was reminded that my feelings were valid. That heavy weight of embarrassment lifted and drifted away, leaving me with an insight into the situation and myself.
Feelings are so powerful, whether positive or negative, they can be totally overwhelming. But no feeling is final. We just need to accept them in the moment, enjoy them or learn from them and move onto the next situation.
“Let everything happen to you; beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.”Rainer Maria Rilke
Things may be overwhelming and difficult right now, but all I can do is to carry on living. Let everything happen to me, accept that things have and will continue to happen that I cannot control. And for all those things that bring me terror, I also have so much beauty in my life. It sometimes is really tough to find the silver linings when life feels shit. But they are there. In your friends, your family, the people you love.
Out of whack
My life is out of whack right now. No job, poor health, lockdown weirdness. I feel the nag of negativity. But lockdown has also meant that I have had 5 months of proper recovery after my surgery. My husband hasn’t been able to work either and we have had so much time together, proper quality time at home. We are getting the jobs down that maybe would have taken us a long time to get around to. I have the kids at home and I have the most wonderful friends. Even if we can’t see each other in real life, they are there. I am reading a lot, watching films and TV and I am doing a lot of art projects that make me happy.
And this whole experience has also made me and the husband reconsider what it is we want from life. What is missing from our lives and where we want to go. And we have both made a very big decision. But more about that in another blog!
Peace and love