My friend and fellow Gateway Dreaming coach Lily Sheen (of Spirit Wolf Healing) posted a photo of a beautiful hawk today. My first reaction: he’s bea-U-ti-ful! Her response? “Ivan was at the Santa Barbara Natural History Museum where he is being taken care of by a lovely man. He had been injured and can no longer fly. They think he’s about 17 and he’s blind in his left eye. He is quite a character!!”
There’s a huge lesson in this for those of us experiencing the ups and downs of life with Fibromyalgia/CFS. We have to adapt our lifestyles to accommodate some of our symptoms. It is only natural that, along the way, we begin to look at our lives in terms of what we can’t do, rather than what we can. We come to a point, though, when – for our own benefit – we need to turn it around. We need to think outside the box and perhaps re-define our purpose in life. If we cannot do what we thought we were supposed to do, then what are our options?
Hawks are meant to be free. Hawks are meant to fly. Hawks are meant to have amazing vision. Hawks are meant to hunt. But is that what hawks must be? Ivan the hawk can’t fly, he can’t see out of one eye, and he surely cannot hunt. Obviously, Ivan could not survive were he free. So, Ivan sits in his space at the Santa Barbara Natural History Museum. He’s not being much of a hawk – or is he?
Were he human, one could imagine that Ivan the hawk could just roll over and play the ‘woe is me’ card – and we’d all be lesser for it. Ivan may not be able to do a lot of hawk-type things, but he is doing something at least as important: he is an ambassador for all other hawks. He provides an opportunity for people who would normally never get anywhere near a hawk to get up close and personal.
Ivan provides an opportunity to educate humans about his species and, because of that knowledge, to care about saving his natural habitat. And, frankly, Ivan is eye candy, so he’s giving great pleasure in that respect, too. If hawks think about their lives, do you suppose that this life is what Ivan would have imagined? Not likely. Does it mean that he contributes nothing or is any less valuable because he cannot be a typical hawk? Not at all!
So, on those days when it seems that some force has stolen the life you were meant to have and has hijacked your future, think of Ivan. Better yet, print out his photo and stick it on your fridge as a reminder. Your life may not be what you expected, but you do still have a purpose, you do still have a wonderful life to lead! Give yourself permission to let go of your expectations of what your life should have been and just allow yourself to be you, to do what you can, and to not worry about what you can’t.
What can you do? Surprise yourself!