I Get What I Need

Prior to his death in 2004, actor and spinal cord advocate Christopher Reeve said “Sometimes life is all about perspective…I’m not living the life I thought I would lead, but it does have meaning, purpose. There is love…there is joy…there is laughter.”  I was so happy I ran across this quote since I had said to my husband just days before that I thought my life needed more meaning. I needed a reason to be excited about getting out of bed every morning. When I read those words I realize that I was looking at my life all wrong. I was living the life I was supposed to be living and it had more meaning than I knew.

I believe that I related to Christopher Reeve since I had been told by doctors at Johns Hopkins that I needed to look at myself as he did. Christopher Reeve didn’t get better — he learned to adjust or live with his injury. And, it’s the same for me. Fortunately, I have use of my legs and I am not paralyzed. I have limitations, pain and problems with the right side of my body, but I consider myself lucky compared to many spinal cord injury patients. However, I am included with this group of patients and I hope one day there will be a cure for those of us who need or would benefit from one.

Christmas is just a week in the past, and as I reflect on the holiday, I wonder why I had such a difficult time getting into the spirit. Having my family together is a joy we didn’t experience while living in Pennsylvania. Prior to moving to Virginia, we celebrated Christmas and then the day after we would make the trek to Virginia and would stay through New Year’s. It was a nice week to be away, but I always felt we were missing out on being together on the actual holiday. My husband’s family has their gathering on Christmas Eve, so now he is the one who is missing his family. Talk about being selfless. This is the one time in our life when a helicopter or airplane would come in handy. This might be a nice suggestion for our neighborhood since we all are going in many different directions. The one downfall…how to justify the many complaints about the substantial increase in the Homeowners Association dues and the sudden need for a helicopter pad or airstrip?

I have to admit I am looking forward to a new year. My daughter told me it’s the year of the dragon and it will be a lucky year for me based on my birthday. While I admit I don’t understand the Chinese horoscopes (I thought I was born during the year of the dog), I also will gladly take all the help I can get. I need a ME year. And, I also must admit that I don’t make the traditional New Year’s resolutions since I believe in assessing life on a regular basis and tweaking as needed. I find when you make a multitude of changes at once most of the time it ends up being a negative experience.  Maybe it’s just me, but I do better when I handle one or two items at a time with limited pressure.

As readers of the blog know I am a huge music fan. I sang for many years while in school, college and in the choir at church. I even took private singing lessons for many years. No matter my mood, music lifts my spirits or even helps me resolve a problem or mull over a situation. And, didn’t some smart person say “music is the universal language?”

Country Music Singer Collin Raye has been through his share of challenges and as soon as I heard his song, I Get What I Need, I knew there were no coincidences I was meant to hear this particular song at this moment in my life. My parents gave the CD to me as a Christmas gift. The lyrics to the songs certainly ring true about my conversations with God and trying to negotiate getting my old life back. I also found I was asking God to help me forgive Dr. Liar for what he did and for the lies. However, what I soon learned is I was only half heartedly forgiving the man who changed my course. And God knew. I now keep these lyrics with me as a reminder of who is really in charge.

I knew all the answers
The way my life should go
And when I used to say my prayers
I would tell God so
It seemed He wasn’t listening
I thought He didn’t care
But looking’ back
It’s plain to see
He was always there

‘Cause I prayed for strength
And I got pain that made me strong
I prayed for courage
And got fear to overcome
When I prayed for faith
My empty heart brought me to my knees
I don’t always get what I want
I get what I need

I’m not saying’ that it’s easy
Or that it doesn’t hurt
When nothing seems to go my way
Nothing seems to work
These days I’m getting better
At going’ with the flow
Accepting that sometimes the answer
To a prayer is no

‘Cause I prayed for strength
And I got pain that made me strong
I prayed for courage
And got fear to overcome
When I prayed for faith
My empty heart brought me to my knees
I don’t always get what I want
I get what I need

Every time I’ve had a door slammed in my face
In time a better one was opened in its place

I prayed for strength
And I got pain that made me strong
I prayed for courage
And got fear to overcome
When I prayed for faith
My empty heart brought me to my knees
I don’t always get what I want
I get what I need

These will be the last lyrics I will include in the blog for a while. However, I received a message from a reader who is struggling with forgiveness. Since I know how difficult it can be to forgive the unforgivable, my gut told me to include this particular song in this post. I hope all who are struggling with this can find it in your heart to move on and let go of the burden.

As I have mentioned before, I feel like a bit of a hypocrite naming the blog My Unplanned Life since who really knows how their life is going to pan out. What I do know is I had to let go of what I thought I wanted in my life and let God do what he wanted. After all, what I have learned is that the miracle isn’t the life that I have missed it’s the life that I’ve got.

Happy New Year Dear Friends ~ I love hearing from you and wish you love, joy, strength, and peace of mind.

©My Unplanned Life and www.shakinguplife.wordpress.com, 2012.

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About mswd

I am an individual living with a spinal cord injury. How the injury occurred, how I found out how severe my injury was and how my planned life suddenly became 'unplanned' is included in this blog. Also included is how the injury has tested my family and me. I believe you will discover it has been both a mentally and physically challenging ordeal and I learned a few lessons along the way. While I am still defining my life’s purpose since the injury, I have uncovered those who are injured, live with pain or have other obstacles to navigate are never able to escape. However, come with me as I explore ways to improve my life, learn to live with multiple neurological conditions, educate others and look for the silver lining. I believe with a little willpower, my caring family and God's guidance I will learn to forgive, hopefully forget how I was treated and dismissed by a doctor and uncover life's new purpose. I pray for painfree days and answers to questions that keep swirling through my mind. I also pray for a cure for neurological conditions and for the doctors to treat their patients with respect. Welcome to my journey. I would love to hear about yours!
This entry was posted in Being Thankful, Christopher Reeve, Depression, Disappointment, Don't Give Up, Dr. Liar, Faith, Forgiveness, God, Joy, Pain, Spinal Cord Injury and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to I Get What I Need

  1. surexpress says:

    Have a blessed 2012!

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