“The wound is the place where the light enters you.” -Rumi
I tore my ACL last November on the second day of ski season. Here’s what I’ve learned this winter.
How to receive and ask for help; I mean truly receive. Receive without feeling guilt or pressure to repay someone back. To receive and sit in a pool of love from friends and family as they cook you meals, run your errands, clean your house and stock your kitchen. “No worries, I got it,” was easier for me to say than “I need help.” I see now that allowing people to truly enter your heart and life is the biggest gift you can give not only to yourself, but to those that deeply love you.
Losing control, when you think you have it all under control, brought me peace, awareness and presence in the long run. I thought I was going to walk out of the ER that day with just a sore knee that needed rest. I was prepared to have the biggest ski season of my life. Plans changed, I fought them and then embraced the new regime of surgery, PT and…nothing. Over the winter, I found more presence, a deeper awareness and permission to accept what is, even if nothing was there.
I am physically pretty tough. I’m not great at “feeling” my body. I fought through pain, never saying no to a physical challenge or honoring what my body was telling me. Knee surgery has put me back in my body, has helped me feel pain and become more sensitive and aware to what it needs. I now have a greater awareness of, and respect for my physical body.
A lot of my recovery has been me, alone to face both the emotional and physical pain. It’s different when you’re by yourself. When no one is around to hear you moan in pain or catch your tears. This isn’t a pity party, it’s an acute awareness of the opportunity to feel every emotion and feeling. If there was someone around, my focus would be on letting them know how shitty I felt. Instead, I had the opportunity to tell myself and process those feelings on a much deeper level. I didn’t run from myself. I sat in some painful moments and developed a really cool relationship with me.
We’re all cut from the same cloth. I used to think the only people coming down the mountain in a sled with ski patrol were the “Texas Tommys” that thought they knew how to ski but really didn’t. This has been a lesson on judgement and patience slapped clear across my face. Judgement in thinking twice before labeling, and patience for those that need extra care and help, in any situation.
All of this culminates in learning how to walk again, both literally and figuratively. Presence and the pace of my life were challenged during this time and now I’ve discovered that this is where life truly unfolds. I have encountered more love, grace and compassion in these past six months from strangers, friends and family in observation of “normal” moments and the world around me than I have in years.
I looked back in my journal from January and saw these words I had written:
“Maybe this is the time to start finding my voice”
I feel this. I feel more comfortable exposing my heart. The peace I feel inside is the biggest gift I will ever receive in my lifetime and what is propelling me to start CAYA, a business helping others find exactly this...peace, space and joy.
I would recommend not tearing your ACL. However it does come bearing enormous gifts if you’re open to receiving them. Big love.