Mar 12, 2009

heaven is real (or finding my "new normal")

Standing at the airport bookstore, only moments before boarding my flight, I grab the first book that catches my attention, throw some cash on the counter and run for the gate.

I squeeze into the seat next to the window and realize that I have selected the book "Heaven is Real", by Don Piper. I had never heard of the author before, despite this being his third best seller.

In a nutshell, Don Piper claims that he died for 90 minutes following a terrible traffic collision and was brought back to life. In that time, he says that he went to Heaven. He feels that his mission today is to spread that news with people.

Sometimes I struggle with my Christianity. Am I being called? What does God want me to do? Could he please send me a very clear text message??

Obviously I don't know if the author really died for 90 minutes, and while I tend to believe him, that is not important really. What is important is how he describes coming to the realization after his accident that things would never be the same for him again. With his myriad of injuries, he was going to have to find his "new normal".

This book was worth 10 therapy:

I have spent the past 2 years waiting for the 'old me' to return. Waiting until I was healthy enough to be a rising star again, to resurrect my great job and excellent professional reputation. BUT....what if the 'old me' doesn't exist anymore? What if she never will? In short, what if THIS is my NEW NORMAL?

As simple as this sounds, this small shift in my thought process feels like it has liberated me: I may never get better!

I may never be that high performing, straight A honors student ever again. Or the high ranking health professional - maybe that is gone for good too.

And you know what? It won't matter.

I need to discover what my new normal will be. To find a way to be kinder to my self and honoring of my body's limitations. To use my talents to offer hope to other people.

Heaven is real. It's just hard to see from behind the fog of depression.

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