This blog is a response to the #UsGuys #UsBlogs topic: “What is your greatest fear?” This picture was taken by Mark Chatwin from Australia, my internet friend of many years: @MarkChatwin on Twitter.
Losing me, losing control, that is my greatest fear. It is having the circumstances of my life, my illness, bipolar disorder, spin so fast that I am left behind at the bottom of the gorge, while the sunshine peaks down at me, but shows me no way of getting back up from where I’ve fallen. No one likes to lose control, but even more for someone who has their sanity to lose. If we lose control we are liable to end up in a strange place with other people in charge of our every decision — with all freedom lost and no hope of recovering it except for by getting well — some nebulous goal we can neither grasp nor imagine at the moment. So, we hang on very tight and hope to grab at some twig or branch to keep us from falling farther into the dark hole we are in. Not knowing that such effort, piled on top of our illness, can only make us worse. What we need to do is let go of the edge, free fall into the darkness, and trust that we will land in a safe place. I did this. I let go of the edge of the precipice and let myself fall. I had been fighting hard for wellness for weeks, which had turned into months. I was very ill when first diagnosed and giving the doctor’s a tremendous challenge. One day while lying in bed, I heard the still small voice within me say, “Let go, I have you.” I was frightened, but the feeling or inner voice was persistent. Finally I did, mentally, I let go. I felt myself falling for what seemed like forever. I was terrified as I fell, afraid of the feeling of having no control. Then I landed. All around me was the deepest, warmest, strongest sense of love I have ever felt before or since. Suddenly I knew that I had a Friend much bigger that myself, the Lord who surrounded me always with His awesome love and I never had to fear losing myself or being out of control again. He had me safe. He was in control and I could relax in that certain knowledge. From that day I began to improve and thankfully, have never been that ill again.
Do I still fear? Yes? Of being out of control? Sometimes. Of being alone, losing myself, disappearing into some crevasse of this frightening illness? Never. For I know the One who created me. Who allowed this illness into my life. I know that He has gone before me and walks beside me, has my back, and no matter how far I may fall…He is not just the sunshine at the top of the abyss, He is the warmest love of all at the bottom.