I have found keeping my mind focused on my health and not being distracted by outside problems and influences in the early days was essential. Fighting cancer is very much an inward journey. A time to put right what has been thrown out of balance in your life, due to not paying attention.
A tip I would like to share with you, don’t forget this worked for me. If you follow my thought process it may trigger a solution for you, or something you haven’t thought of in your own journey?
When my mind would stray into negative territory, which was thinking of death, or that cancer was incurable, or the next fear or problem I needed to surmount. I had to learn to switch off the thoughts and to let my sub-conscious sort itself out to complete its work.
I did crossword puzzles, Sudoku and cryptic crosswords. It was about giving my mind a different puzzle to sort out and much needed space, instead of the present fears and worries. Cryptic crosswords were a great way for my mind to be totally absorbed. It didn’t stray and remained focused on the problem until the word I needed was found. This led to the next clue for another puzzle or word to find.
Studying code breaking books was another pastime at one point. All are quiet and peaceful challenges, from there creativity would come and a peaceful and serene emotion would be found. It brought to the conscious awareness of looking at life as a puzzle to be solved. It leads to looking at your life in a different perspective, or from a different angle to find the solutions.
Playing chess on a comptuerised chessboard, was also a good way to take the mind away from troubles. (I do declare though… I am sure my chessboard computer cheats!) No.. to be truthful... I suck at playing chess. But I have fun with the puzzle by trying to improve my game.
Completing the puzzles brings another advantage, which is learning new meanings of words I hadn’t thought of. There again a new perspective of how I viewed a specific word in my current experience in life. It was looking deeper through the layers, not merely looking skin deep, but diving deeper into the world of the word. So often we break down words into a noun, adjective, pronoun, adverb all grammar and what is determined correct, in the use of the word.
Sometimes a word would lead to a Latin or German equivalent. If you think this is useless information, then that is what it will be for you. If you find it interesting, then your attention is held, and it opens new worlds. You choose your own world and how to want to view it.
Completing puzzles brings a sense of achievement, no matter how small, when healing in your life seems to be so slow. By nature we are impatient to heal and get on with the finer things in life. Puzzles for me was a way of letting nature complete its business while I took time out and had some fun without stirring up impatient and frustrated feelings.
Some weeks I would notice a particular theme would be introduced into my life. One month it didn’t matter where I turned, or what I read, had me always drawn towards the theme was the Swan. I read stories about swans when I drove about I saw pictures of swans. I saw an old tyre cut and shaped into a swan and painted white. It brought entertainment and fun into my life. I looked for the next surprise!
At the present time, I see and are drawn to butterflies. They inspire me; I search for them everywhere I go. They are found on beautiful notepads, in nature, in colouring books and beautiful stationery. They become an icon and a symbol on my journey and life path.
Like words they hold a much deeper meaning, so much more than the skin deep meaning. I learn to pay attention to these little treasures. Life is viewed like a puzzle, it gives us clues on where we need to pay attention. It teaches us to consider a deeper meaning.
Do what is right for you, where is your life path taking you?
Some of you have had treatments recently, I am with you. I feel for you. I hope my writing can bring you comfort in some form.