This is a follow up article from my Loss: Cee’s Chronic Illness article.
My first Grief Recovery Method teacher wouldn’t touch any of my health issues during class because I was told that my health issues were too complex. My teacher did suggest I start by doing a chart on my health. I put together a timeline and chart that covered any type of illness that I had over my entire lifetime, not just Lymes Disease or when I was hospitalized and in a long coma, but also when I had severe bronchitis as a child. On this chart I included some of the highlights of my life, like when we moved away from Minnesota when I was a child, graduations, when Chris and I got together, etc. It was easier for me to correlate events with illnesses. The timeline and chart gave me a good basis to look for patterns.
The one big pattern I found was:
Lyme disease —> No control over body —> brought up childhood issues
What stood out for me for the fifteen years I struggled with Lyme disease is that I had no control over my own body. Someone (mostly Chris) had to do everything for me. I was so weak after the coma that I couldn’t even speak or write, feed myself or wash my face. I got better and could start doing the routine things of daily life, but I still have moments where I need help with things.
But I saw there was a pattern in my earlier life, when my father molested me. Despite years of working on incest issues, I found out that no control over my body as an adult threw me back into no control over my body as a child.
So when I met with Cari Dawson this past week so she could work with me on my illness loss issues, I told her my revelation. We continued to talk for a half hour about my dad and incest issues. So my homework assignment from her was to do a relationship chart regarding my father.
But I’m finding out that loss of health isn’t that complex. It’s just one more layer. I’m learning that the work needs to begin with what is on your mind right now because that appears to be vital. All losses in our life are connected in some ways. One thing I’m really learning is that grief is cumulative and negatively cumulative.