Early on, when I was infested with bugs, but didn’t know it, I was afraid. I knew something was wrong. I had bites that had festered in my flesh, that itched and burned. That were not healing but instead expanding. The doctors didn’t know how to diagnose or even how to treat me. I spent months in limbo researching and testing. Referral after referral until we finally had a diagnosis. And then, treatment options weren’t available in Canada for Leishmaniasis so special permission from the government had to be granted in order to bring in a unique Chemotherapy from Germany to treat the vicious parasites.
I acutely remember the fear and the impatience in waiting. Watching each day as more flesh was missing from my body. I remember the relief when the treatment arrived. I remember the fight to kill the bugs, to survive. I remember the dawn of realization that my internal narrative had to change to fit my new reality. I remember the push and pull between resistance and acceptance.
The truth is that I will never be free of the bugs. There is no way to sterilize them from my system, they will never be eradicated from my body. They could haunt me from within, waking up to feast again at any time. Fear can be immobilizing. But I’ve learned that fear can also be a powerful catalyst.
There came a time in my journey when I realized that I had to find a way to co-exist with the bugs. If we were both going to inhabit this meat-suit that I travel the earth in, we would have to find a way to get along. I needed to find a way to co-inhabit this body in a way that allowed me to thrive and the bugs to rest. Would there be risks and times of concern ahead? Surely. Ultimately, I realized that it is possible for me to be stronger than the bugs, that we can get along in this body together, posing little threat to one another if we just find a harmonious balance that allows the ebb and flow of life to carry on.
Would I need to continue to be responsible for my health and wellness? Absolutely.
Was I willing to do the work? You bet.
Was it possible? Without a doubt.
One day I will leave this earth. I don’t have a crystal ball to know when or how, but I do know that like everyone else I have an expiration date. My truth is that living life on my terms is more important than any fear I could possibly face. I wholeheartedly believe that life is all about choices and how I choose to see my situation and the world around me is truly where my inner power lies. There are going to be times in my life where I enter into the battle between resistance and acceptance again, times when I question the strength of my beliefs, times when the world challenges me with fear and uncertainty. In those times, I will continue to remind myself that nothing is permanent, everything changes and that there is always a path to harmony.
I just have to be willing to look.