*Brainspirations is a heartfelt series by Jason, designed to share the roller-coaster of emotions and insights he gathers on his healing journey. It's about fostering a community of support and introspection to help everyone navigate through life's uncertainties.
Today’s reflection comes with a hope that it resonates with YOU and fuels a little spark of self-compassion and awareness.
With another MRI marked done and an “ALL CLEAR!” verdict, I feel a blend of relief and gratitude.
Now on a routine of monthly MRIs, this has become my new rhythm of life. Every scan delves into the nooks and crannies of my brain, ensuring nothing amiss since the last exploration. This privilege, to have such diligent monitoring, is something I cherish immensely, and my heart overflows with gratitude towards the stellar team at THE Ohio State University James Cancer Center.
When the storm in my brain commenced, I struck a pact with the cosmos – simple, yet profound. Should I sail through, my life henceforth would be a channel to help others awaken to their stories. Although a daunting promise for someone on a path of overcoming self-loathing, it’s becoming a journey I am learning to navigate.
It’s a common mirage to feel alone, empty, invisible, or unworthy, especially when life throws a curveball that sweeps our feet off the ground. Suddenly, it feels like a deluge of shame and regret from the bygone years comes crashing down, not in trickles, but a monstrous tsunami, often spiraling into a chorus of, “I am not [insert self-doubting phrase], and I deserve this.”
Imposter syndrome has been my companion in this maze. There were phases when I felt undeserving of the good while totally worthy of the adversities. Why? Because I convinced myself that I wasn’t a good person. The irony? Deep down, I know I AM a good person. The roots of this internal discord trace back to a long tale, one that has required years of therapeutic exploration to untangle.
If this narrative resonates with you, let me assure you - there is hope! Don’t forfeit on yourself; you are a treasure! Remember, healing is a step-by-step venture, not a marathon. It’s a gradual undoing of layers that took years to compile.
With time, I am becoming adept at recognizing when I am sailing in this stormy sea of self-doubt. What’s the secret? A blend of practice, awareness, and a dash of action-oriented resolve. It’s about mastering the art of challenging the false narrative you sell to yourself, which indeed is a tough nut to crack. After all, shouldn’t you be your own ally? Yet, we often become our most stringent critic, a path that leads to self-inflicted wounds.
Do you often spin tales in your head? Like everything going south when in reality, it’s not? Or cooking up an entire conversation before it even occurs, only to find the actual dialogue takes a completely different turn? If yes, then you can fathom the whirlpool of emotions on the day of the MRI and the agonizing wait for the results. Except, it’s not about mundane interactions, it’s a confrontation with mortality. Yes, it's a hard pill to swallow.
Here’s a quirky coping mechanism we’ve adopted at our home – we’ve personified our negative narratives. So, when caught in a self-deprecating spiral, we can literally tell ourselves, “Shut up, [enter name]! You’re so full of [enter your favorite phrase]!”
Since the onset of my chemo, my blood metrics have been on a low, halting the progress to the third month of the regimen, while I am still at month one. Naturally, the story I spun wasn’t rainbows and sunshine.
But then, when the doctor strides in with a demeanor as light as someone going for an ice cream treat and beams, “Your scan looks fantastic!” - my heart halts, my fabricated story crumbles, and a realization blooms - I am deserving of good things. And for a fleeting moment, that niggling voice of doubt retreats to silence.
Your pouring love and unwavering support are the wind beneath my wings! ❤️🙏❤️
Sending waves of love and gratitude,