At the moment you learn a piece of information that changes your life, what is the first response? I had this conversation the other day with VA Woman publisher, Dorri C. Scott and she poignantly asked me when I completed a life-changing moment story with her. “How do you respond to something like that?” The ‘something like that’ was the day I was told by my doctor that I needed to come in for immediate cryosurgery. I had an abnormal pap smear and there was a concern about cancer of the cervix.
Then at age 23, the word ‘cancer’ was scary and mind-blowing. I had a thousand questions and even more scenarios that ran through my mind. It was at age 33 when I was told that a biopsy would be needed to a lump in my breast. It is strangely amazing how a moment such as these can provide your existence with a level of clarity beyond your comprehension. A moment that you ask yourself long after the doctor’s report has settled in your brain “Is this new knowledge handling me?” or “Am I handling this new knowledge and incorporating it into my life?” This and other profound moments are what I call “game changers.” A game-changing moment causes you to have pause on what you know, who taught it to you, what others knew, when they knew, how you think, feel, react, and so on. I can say it is easy to want to go back to bed and bury your head under the covers, and not even deal with the circumstance at hand.
It is becoming all too common for people of faith to check out on life. Depressed. Despondent. Disengaged. These are three words that negate our ability to hear God speak, and rely on Him to move us from a state of despair. A single diagnosis can change your life forever. When our emotions take over our thinking, it is difficult at best to physically respond to anything happening around us. And sometimes what happens to us. In order to heal from what has been revealed in this situation, here are a few life applications that helped me, and I pray will help you on your journey.
- Hear what the other person is saying: Sometimes when we are given information that is confusing to us, we have a tendency to not listen. Not listening cancels out our ability to inquire about the best options and treatment.
- Take time to process your true feelings: If I didn’t know anything else, I knew there was no time like the present to address the situation. Schedule the appointment and deal with it.
- Accept it is ok if your feelings are still the same: Puzzled. Bewildered. Uncertain. Upset. The key is to be open for treatment. Healing will not begin unless your heart is willing
Many people around you may question your ‘faith status’ when you refuse to talk to God, blend in with your peers, or even participate in your own healing process when going through a reveal process. There is no denying the reality of our pain. The feelings are real. The hurt is real. The disbelief is real. Once you have a revealing moment, how you recover will mean the difference between learning from the experience or possibly retreating altogether. Be open and honest with yourself and know that a positivity and proactive living will take you far in your journey to heal the mind, body, and Spirit.