Responses to comments
I know some people believe that sometimes there isn't any deeper meaning when illness or other challenges occur. I just happen to disagree. And I can't speak for anyone else, but in my experience, looking for the lesson has led me to do and experience some amazing things, things I would have missed out on if I had just chalked it up to fate. And since it doesn't hurt anyone else AND it actively enhances my life for me to believe what I believe, I'm gonna keep doing it. So here's my latest thought about that, excerpted from an email I sent to Becca earlier today:
"The other thing I'm figuring out is that it's sometimes easier to follow a routine, even though part of the reason I went "off the grid" is so I could have more control over my time. But making a conscious decision every day about what you want to do to make the most of your time is tiring. Sometimes it's just easier to go to work and do what's expected of you. It's boring, but it's familiar and it takes relatively little effort.
"I remember feeling nostalgic for that sometimes when I went part time at my job in Chicago before taking the big plunge to leave completely. And I think this time around I just imposed a routine where none really needed to be, simply because I wasn't prepared to think about whether it was time to make bigger changes, or was just tired of having to make a conscious decision every day about how I wanted to spend my time. I'm still not quite ready to field the question of whether I need/want bigger changes, but I'm working toward it, and being ill took me right out of my mindless routine and left me with time for those questions to start to creep into my consciousness."
So that's what I'm getting out of my illness. After a period where I was happy just being in a routine, it's time for me to start being more mindful of how I spend my time. And I think my book project is one reason. (And by the way, I sent my proposal to an agent yesterday! She's looking at it right now.) But another big reason is that I need to think about what I want my life to be now that I have the brown belt. That was a huge milestone for me, and I have achieved it. I want to continue to build on it, but in a different way, I guess. Still no real answers, but definitely some ideas.
And Abdullah, that sucks about prescribing antibiotics for viruses. Now I'm out 50 bucks AND am contributing to the development of superdiseases! I'd much rather just be contributing to the development of superdiseases. Do you know what I could do with 50 bucks?