‘A feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate that suffering.’ (www.dictionary.reference.com)
Steve Flowers in his book ‘Living With Your Heart Wide Open’ puts it this way – ‘To practice compassion is to turn toward suffering with an open and caring heart that looks for a way to alleviate suffering.’
Now those with chronic illness suffer on many levels. They suffer physically with pain and fatigue, often that is accompanied with mental suffering in the form of depression, anxiety and panic attacks. Add to those the suffering of the soul or spirit or indeed, inner suffering, that of grief, guilt, self-reproach and the lack of self-esteem. Many of those who suffer with chronic conditions have spent their whole lives waiting to be validated. They have waited for someone to say to them – you are okay, just as you are! Well, today i am telling you – YOU ARE OKAY, JUST AS YOU ARE!
Well, it time to stop waiting for that validation from someone else, it is time to validate yourself. It is, indeed, time to show yourself some compassion. As you sit reading this ask yourself – what is the one thing that you need today – not what little … needs, or the spouse or the next door’s cat/dog or anyone or anything else. I am giving you permission to show yourself some compassion. To see your own suffering and find one way in which you can alleviate that suffering today. My granddaughter, Amelia when she wants something that she thinks she cannot have will often say ‘I need… and how can you deny her something that she needs?
Now, I am not you and so I will not offer any suggestions for you, but here are a few things i have in my mind to do for me today –
- walking meditation
- eat some fruit
- drink plenty of water
- have a shower
- eat food
- enjoy the peace and quiet
I may not do them all, but these are the things i need today.