ANGER


When you feel anger, don’t dismiss it or shame it. Acknowledge anger as the message it is. Emotions send messages, information that we need. Anger can tell us something needs to change; anger warns of injustice. Anger spurred such changes as important as the civil rights movement. Anger in the mind of someone skilled at its interpretation: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. So, we can practice being skilled, as well. When you feel it, realize it is a feeling, and that its message is that something needs to change, or to be addressed. Now, use your skillful mind to discern: what is your skillful, contributory approach? Practice, practice.

 

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WHAT IS WHAT IS?

“What doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger.”  Nietzsche said it.  Who has not thought or repeated it?  I have.  Then, when I started thinking about life as it is, I reviewed this expression and whether I wanted to retain it.  I’m doing that with a few expressions, as I find them.  It has served a good purpose.  I think I’m trying to put it away, now.

I was talking with a friend about viruses, particularly, getting the flu.  She mentioned that the virus really is designed to kill you, that recovering from it, well, we ought to see the miracle in that.  I agree, in part.   But, I think a scientist would have a different take.  It’s not out to kill you per se.  It’s out to survive.  A virus is a living thing.  It does what it does to live.  It hasn’t any concept about killing you, it isn’t personal.

We do this with a lot of things.  Set up adversarial relationships.  We are at cross purposes.  But, is that really true?  Is it useful to us?  Maybe, that expression has been.  Probably many people have pulled up out of the dust by that one.  I just want to look at why we have to think things are out to harm, or kill, us?  Is it always true?  Sometimes a person, or other organism, is just doing what it does, and we happen to be the done to in that situation.

Why do we think misfortune, challenges or trials are this ‘adversity’?  It’s the stuff of the day, and you deal with it.  That’s the way I’m trying to see things.  Trying to get inside that equanimity.   I don’t see the limb that fell from our tree and into the road as an adversity.  I see that strong wind broke a branch of a very old tree, and it fell.  Period.   The fires that are currently raging some miles from me, it’s fire.  It does what fire does.  There is destruction, loss of life and sadness from that.  These fires are the result of someone’s careless disregard of the law, and other persons and property.  There should be consequences, natural ones that fall from such an event.   Why can’t we accept our true feelings about such events, rather than demonizing them?  I feel very sad about the destruction of the land, the loss of life and harm to animals, damage of people’s homes and property.  It’s an event that leaves a scar.  I believe we deal more effectively with our lives, and have something effective to pass on, when we just deal honestly with the emotions we feel, rather than projecting some quality on to something.  It’s another layer, not a solution.

So, when you trip over the rug, or fall off the deck (my specialty), the rug and the deck are not out to kill you.  They are not a challenge or an adversity.  They are what is.  The results are what is.  You don’t have to like them; it’s ok to be sad about the consequences – it doesn’t help you to think something is out to get you.

On that note, I’m going to have a cup of coffee and sit on my deck – it looks ‘friendly’ today.  Lol.  Thanks for stopping by.  Lilie

POT, OR NOT?

I’m not writing this about whether ‘ medical marijuana’ (don’t you love that name for it, changes the whole plant) should be legalized.  I am writing about my opinion whether it should be used for chronic pain.  For end-of-life situations, I’m all for it – go ahead.

For chronic pain, an issue close to my heart, I am not all for it.  No.  There are many factors to consider before using marijuana for chronic pain.  First of all, you’d have to consider using it continually, because chronic pain is what it says it is – chronic.  It doesn’t go away.  E-v-e-r.  24/7, it’s yours.  I know a lot about that.

An aside here, it is funny (not in a laughing way, maybe ‘funny’ peculiar, as mom would say) that most of the healthcare providers who were against the legalization of marijuana in my state, have no problem passing out antidepressants, anti-anxiety meds, muscle relaxants and painkillers.  And, the western medical protocol for treating chronic pain is as close to unconscionable as you can get.

In considering using any substance that has the potential to alter our brains, we have to think what is to be gained, what may be lost.   I do take some pain medication, non-narcotic, and as little as possible.  It isn’t because I’m a martyr, it is because I want my faculties intact as much as possible and I’d rather have the sensation of pain, than be impaired and out driving, or in my own home all by myself.  I want me, as intact as possible.  There is no reliable information about the long term effects of marijuana use.  There is no reliable information about the long term use of anti-anxiety medications, antidepressants, other painkillers.  Except, that none of them were meant for long term use; and, they have no potential to effect improvement or cure.  They are simply a mask for symptoms.

Personally, I don’t want the dependency issue that any person (considered by the medical community as an ‘addict’, or not) taking medication for chronic pain will have.  I don’t want to be dependent on a healthcare provider, a pharmacy, any person or entity outside of myself.   I’m willing to pay whatever price for that independence of body and mind.   The second thing to consider:  Do you have boatloads of money?  Do you need to be concerned about your financial future?  If you answered Yes to the first question; well, do as you please.  If you answered Yes to the second, like I did – listen up – pain medications, marijuana and those obtained from a traditional pharmacy, will help your pharmacist, the seller of the marijuana, your healthcare provider and NOT YOU.    It will drain your wallet.  There are other things on which I want to spend my money.

Initially, it seems like a good idea.  Marijuana for chronic pain – maybe freedom and sweet release!  Any action has a consequence, that’s the place to start with sorting it out for yourself.   I considered those consequences for myself, the answer was No.  There are times pain is very difficult for me to tolerate.  I do have to alter my activities, and my schedule.  I have learned how to do that, and to stay as active as I possibly can.  I’ve put up with the prejudices and judgments and not answering is the best answer – live your life PERIOD.

As of now, there just is no good answer to chronic pain.  But true science in this direction leads toward your own brain holding promise for answers.  We can affect our own brains, change our habits, our beliefs.  I went this route.  I chose to explore, investigate and practice changing my mind for coping with pain.  I don’t lose anything, I’m still me all the time, and I hope a better me for self and others.  Meditation was my choice.   Let me be clear, it does not, at this time. alter my pain in any way.  I’m not ‘better’ painwise.  I am better in that sense that we all know but can’t explain:   My attitude is better; coping skills are improved; my sense of emotional balance is greatly improved,  I have more physical energy, and I  experience FUN on a regular basis.

So, medical marijuana for chronic pain.  No.  I want you to consider every other positive alternative.  Consider cause and effect, consequences for choices and behaviors.  Instant relief does not mean long term or productive, contributory relief  in continuum.  My question to myself is always:  Who do you want to be?  Will this help you get there?  The answer for me was No.  In good conscience, I can’t recommend this choice to anyone.  I can’t recommend anything that puts control and choice outside of you when the answer is within.

Be the guardian of you.  The white knight is already here, look in the mirror.

Thanks for stopping by.  Lilie Allen