How to Be Patient With a Procrastinating Healing Process
I really thought something was wrong.
Ten weeks after injections had been fed into my misbehaving veins in my calves, I am still dealing with raised and angry lines along the side of my legs. There are hard and twisted ropes just under the skin, like alien marionette cables were inserted into my flesh while I slept.
I had my first doctor’s appointment this morning since the last procedure. And I was nervous. Anxious about the results of the scan.
Convinced that the healing process had gone awry. Or simply wasn’t going at all. Worried that something must be wrong with me and the way my body was recovering from the trauma.
On the one hand, I knew that this was going to be a process. A long-term outcome in a quick-fix life. But still, I reasoned, this reaction of mine had to be over-the-top. A deviation from the norm.
I waited nervously as the ultrasound wand passed from my thigh, whose healing had already been verified by scan and by results, to the painful calf in question.
Ready for judgment.
Ready to hear that I wasn’t progressing as expected.
Ready to learn that I was stuck. Or even worse, somehow moving backwards.
Instead I heard, “Beautiful. Textbook,” from the technician that scans dozens of legs a day.
It was only my lack of experience and perspective that made me fear my healing was somehow abnormal. Off track.
Because that’s the thing about healing. It’s stubborn, operating on its own schedule and its own trajectory. It’s nonlinear, taking side roads and switchbacks instead of the most direst route. It’s slow, always taking longer than we desire or expect. And it’s a procrastinator, putting off the big changes until later.
And the best way to stay patient is to gain perspective through the eyes of those who have seen it many times before.
Who can assure you that you’re okay. That what you’re experiencing is normal. That even though it may not feel like it, you are making forward progress. And that at some point, the process will be behind you.
And then you can help provide that needed perspective for others.
Funny enough, the leg that has been causing me the most trouble the past several weeks is now “done,” all of the misbehaving veins identified and neutralized. The pain was a sign of healing. While the other leg, largely quiet these past weeks, has been hiding more problems and will require further treatment. I guess it is the silent ones you have to watch out for:)