Sunday, June 6, 2010

June Gloom, Pain, Prisms and Perspective

I sit here surrounded by the soft sounds of restful slumber and the milky haze of what is known here in Southern California as "June Gloom".  On the floor beside me, our two dogs Becca and Micah, snore peacefully blanketed in blissful sleep.  To the left of me, my husband sits with his head against the headboard, mouth slightly open rhythmic breaths giving away his almost silent stolen bit of respite.  Our cat, Callie, is nestled snuggly beneath the covers on his lap.  Every now and again her little head pops up at the sound of a birdsong coming from our feeder outside the door.  The ocean recesses and retreats against the shoreline below our bluff and the words enter my mind in almost the same rhythmic pattern.  This is my Saturday.
I must confess that I am not usually a gloomy person. But the June Gloom rests heavier on my soul during days when I can do very little more than move my fingers steadily across the keyboard.  There is something about living in the constant throws of chronic pain that is both exhausting and encompassing.  My family understands this.  They know what I go through and how much I must battle the darkness that can sometimes eclipse the wonderful lightness of living.  They know that there are times when I must give into the overwhelming pull of living with Fibromyalgia.  And I know that they deserve a wife, mother, daughter, friend who lives in the light of life.  A very good life.  I try to live in the balance by focusing on the things that I can do.  By using the gloom as a time to reflect upon the subtle sights and sounds of living.  The things that often pass by unnoticed because we are often busy making too much noise to hear them.  Pain magnifies everything.  It emulsifies the negative.  This is why it can take patience and practice to live in the light when dealing with a chronic illness.  It is important to understand the gloom, but also to notice the glimmers which can sometimes take on the colors of a rainbow.
The details can become muddled when viewed through the prism of pain.  The colors muted, the shapes and textures clouded and sharp and the sounds downright abrasive.  But then, something finally helps to ease the distress.  A decent night of sleep, the benefit of laughter, the right pain pill at the right time, an enjoyable meal, an engrossing novel, or a break in the thick layer of gloom.  And suddenly, a brilliant prism of light appears before us.  Was it there all along?  Is it possible that we might have been so fixated on the pain(albeit, physical or mental) that we could not see past the obvious?  Did the benefit of viewing things from a different angle allow us to see something that could have been there all along?
These pictures, taken on a sunny day last week, exemplify the way in which a prism can alter our perceptions.  I was trying to take some interesting pictures of this lovely glass vessel filled with sea treasures which was given to me by my Angel Daughter Number Two for Mother's Day.  And then I noticed the rainbows.  It would have been enough just to view the reflection of a sunny day through the beauty of this terrarium, but I was given so much more.  I was given another perspective and rather than ignoring something that I was not originally looking for, I took the time to notice it.  Really, really notice it.  And today, as I was working through the pain that was pulsating throughout my entire body, I took time to notice the sounds and sights of what was going on around me and the gloom, both physically and mentally, began to lift.  The pain, my pain, reflected through the prism of the light of my own life, became more manageable and less daunting.  The gloom lifted and I soaked in the colors of my own environment.  The very same environment which I had been in all along, but which now seemed much more serene and comforting.

May the prism through which you view your own life, be one that is filled with many colors.  May you find a way to notice your way past the pain.  And may you always be reminded that there is color in everything, whether we are aware of it or not.


Mickey (Michel) Johnson said...

...what a gorgeous mother's day gift and perception you have given to us. i love the rainbows given off by prisms...they always remind me of the film of my favorites...i also love one of the quotes from the film which was actually a quote from abraham lincoln...if you look for the good in mankind, you will surely find it! my love, mickey

joanne said... is an awesome gift and one I so needed today. Restful, peaceful days ahead I pray for you..;p

Renee said...

It is so true that pain magifies everything...and that perspective also changes everything. Such a lovely post with so much insight. Living in the midwest, I have not heard of June gloom....must be somewhat like winter blahs here in snow country?
Thanks again....I needed this today when my pain levels are so high I am sofabound with heat to soothe my body and have been distracted from my many blessings....your post has helped my focus once again.

Kathleen Botsford said...

Oh dearest Deb, I wish I could wave a magic wand and remove all the pain in your life. Physical and heart felt. You inspire me to be a more compassionate person. Thank you. I'm sending you love and prayers on the wings of angels......xoxo

Tisha said...

Beautifully said, Debra. Indeed, pain can cause perspective to get skewed, understandably but how wonderful that you were able to get back enjoying the "serene comfort" of your life. May your future transitions to that peaceful frame of mind (and body) always flow so smoothly.

Sunshine said...

Beautiful pic Deb, and love the post as usual well describe..
Thinking about you !

Sabi Sunshine

Neil and Susan Brown said...

So incredibly written Debra. You give others the understanding of what it is to live with pain. All that you know and share through your life lessons, make you the beautiful person that you are. :)

Laura said...

Dear One,
This is so eloquently is All a matter of paying attention...noticing the beauty through the pain, and suffering...God's Presence is always well...present. We forget, we become most understandably distracted and then some sweet, mysterious observation (like your gorgeous rainbow) brings us back to the larger view, beyond the pain. I am so sorry that you are struggling right now in pain. I know this dance so well myself. It is good that you are taking care of yourself with gentleness until this passes...and it will, you know it will. I send you love and wishes for easier days/nights and the grace to continue to notice the blessings, abundant in your life...side by side with the suffering that somehow makes the beauty that much more grand.


Peggy Payne said...

I'm sorry about the pain part of the June gloom, Debbie. I think you handle chronic pain heroically.

Debbie said...

I am so sorry you have had the June gloom. I have read many Californians' blogs that talk about it. I think it hits here in August.

Sharon said...

The prisms of light remind us that rainbows are everywhere. May you have moments of peace and ease ~

Sunshine said...

hey Deb

How's everything with you? Missing you and thinking about you!

Love Sabi

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