I am so good at just sitting; not doing anything else, but sitting still. And breathing, I guess. Can I count that as a skill too…
So few people will ever grasp or understand what it is I do all day every day.
They hear an individual is unable to work and their mind explodes with the copious possibilities that they (a healthy and fully functioning human) would do with such a luxury; learn to sew their own clothes, redecorate the whole house, de clutter, watch too much TV, have movie marathons, blast some music, meet friends for coffee… (I can’t think of anymore because it’s been over a decade since I had the luxury of time off without illness.)
What I do every day, without deviating from schedule, is sit.
Sit. With my feet up because my body cooperates better if the blood flow isn’t affected as much.
No reading. No telly. No social media. No music. No writing or editing blog posts. Large chunks of my time and my life are spent simply sitting, for I am too unwell to be doing more than that most of the time. This is what rest means to me now; times with no external stimulus.
As I move into Veteran Territory with chronic illness, this sitting that I am so good at now occurs alongside a quietened mind; one that no longer races with the things I wish I could do, the things I ‘should’ be doing, the things I would be doing if this hadn’t happened to me. (For the most part anyway – I am not a robot.)
I can sit and focus on the rising and falling of my chest, the expansion and retraction of my abdomen as I do little more than breathe.
Some recoil at how dull such a life must be. But when you’ve faced the severity of illness that so many of us within the disability/chronic illness community have, the ability to somehow have found peace like this is a wonderful gift.
When you are too unwell for any kind of excess, other than an excess of rest, you learn to live a life like this. Where sitting is the main event of any given day.
And the days where I am at peace and content with that are the nicest days of all.