Strep throat is going around here in the New York area and I succumbed to it a couple weeks ago. “Strep throat.” It’s one of those silly, “lite”-sounding ailments that actually packs quite a punch. I’m of late fully recovered and back in gear, thankfully, but I was definitely laid up for a spell!
To heal myself, I relied on antibiotics from the natural world—oil of oregano, raw garlic, raw honey, cayenne pepper, and the like. I enjoy putting on my “medicine woman” hat and relying on the wisdom of Mother Nature. I successfully knocked the undesired germs out of my system, but it took some time.
It’s never fun to be sick—it’s uncomfortable and it’s inconvenient. I felt bad for the extra load my heroic, blessing of a husband had to shoulder, and for my inability to care for my kids in the present, engaged way I am committed to.
I also felt more than a little mortified about having to reschedule and then re-reschedule beloved clients as I was slower to mend than I anticipated. It feels horrible to disappoint people, especially when they have already waited several weeks for their appointment to begin with.
And yet the enforced “letting go” that arises due to illness is growth inspiring and soul fueling. We are forced to receive, to let in rather than put out. We are soundly humbled. We are made vulnerable. We are softened. We must simply be.
Yes, it’s good for the soul when we get sick—it forces us to transcend our ego investments and connect to our truer, more soulful selves. This, even when we are ailing, physically compromised, and perhaps not even aware that such a powerful, sacred process is taking place.
I’ll be honest. Prior to getting sick, I was cutting corners on my self-care regimen. I had bitten off a little more than I could chew with new offerings, and my care of self went out the window. I was doing less yoga than I should have been, and eating more chocolate (I love organic dark chocolate, and while it may be healthy for some, it does not agree with my constitution or my skin).
I was even in humorous communication with higher intelligence, bartering, begging of Spirit, even as my choices were clearly inviting lack of well being, “please let me not fall ill!” Yet there are certain laws of cause and effect that simply cannot be circumvented. I fell ill, and must take due responsibility for the lack of self-care that led up to it.
Self-care, as you will know if you’ve worked with me at all, is pretty much my religion, and it’s pretty much the religion of my tarot cards. According to my cards, self-care equals our rocket fuel. High-grade fuel in our fuel tanks as human beings translates into well-being. Well-being is our greatest currency in life.
Fuel in our tanks means energy. It means inspiration. It means enthusiasm. It means patience. It means clear-headedness and feeling “on.” It means radiance and self-assurance. It means a pep in our step, quick-wits for handling whatever befalls us, and a sense of humor when things don’t go our way.
Self-care is our one and only magic bullet for attracting what we want, and for contributing what we wish to contribute to the world around us. Self-care keeps us in well-being, and well-being keeps us on track on our life’s path—it’s our cue, our in-born barometer, that we are indeed on track.
Getting sick is spirit’s clever way of getting us back into alignment on our life’s railroad track, of recalibrating us. When I get sick I do my best to surrender because I know it’s happening for me and not to me. I do this imperfectly, as I am only human, and I am ultra-committed to my many responsibilities and it’s hard to put these commitments to family and work and personal development aside.
Being forcibly wiped out, and hence pulled away from the everyday life I so cherish, and even yanked from being able to pick up a book or watch a transformational video, makes being sick a downer. But at the same time, I do my best to cultivate extreme acceptance of circumstances, to embrace the situation, to make my peace with it. I do all I can to create the optimal circumstances for my body to repair itself, which means above all to radically relax.
Being sick makes us appreciate so much more when we are in optimal health. Radiant good health is a state we generally take for granted when we’re in it. But even more importantly, when I surrender to being sick, I am allowing the angels to have their way with me, to do their work on me, their otherworldly ministrations. For when we are sick, we are in a state of divinely enforced “letting go.”
When we let go of the minutiae that keeps us so occupied in our day-to-day (the things that feel so important, and yet turns out they’re not), the angels and ascended beings can swoop in and work on us, infusing us with their cosmic pixie dust.
When we are in a state of serenity, calm, and relaxation, even if as a result of being sick, we are out of our own way. And when we are out of our own way, higher beings can offer us indispensable information, they can catapult our growth and evolution, and they can implant within us the new encoding and the higher wisdom we are in need of at a given time.
So let us hereby honor times of illness as a sacred part of the cycle of our lives. Let us receive these phases graciously as a time of lessons and growth. Let us accept illness as a natural part of the order of things. Let us consider being sick a season of the soul, something like the unique magic of winter, with its challenge and discomfort and its leafless, skeletal trees.
Let us conceive of illness not as a curse, but as a process where “the invisible” and “the mysterious” is close at hand, as ever working on our behalf and for our benefit. For when we are sick, we are in yet one more state of being that we humans have erroneously labeled as “bad” even while it bears plenty that is “good.”