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Basic Requirements for Living with Illness

Breathe in, breathe out. Forget this and enlightenment is unobtainable.  ~ Author unknown

Health Illness

Health and illness go in opposite directions, but the way out of illness and the way into health follow the same path.

None of us is perfect, and thank goodness we don’t have to be. All that is required of us is that we breathe in, and we breathe out—nothing more. Well, perhaps there is a wee bit more, because we need to stay healthy in order to breathe. Then of course, some of us seek joy, security, love, and other forms of fulfillment. Nevertheless, it comes back to “breathe in, breathe out.”

One of the facts of life that continues to astonish me, is that I need to practice healthy habits EVEN when I don’t feel like it. Health and illness go in opposite directions, but the way out of illness and the way in to health follow the same path. Illness and injury do not excuse me from making healthy choices. Illness and injury are the motivation for continuing to stay active, to meditate, to sleep 8 hours, to drink lots of water, to select fruits and vegetables rather than junky comfort food., and so on.

Sometimes, I lose my way. Then it is a matter of returning to the moment, just breathing in and out. It serves me well to keep life simple, particularly when trudging through pain and derailment from feeling well. There are moments when life seems impossible. It is in then, when just existing requires more than we have, the secret of life can be distilled in this single practice, “Breathe in, breathe out.” Observing the breath can lead us to the present, and that is where we see what we need to do next.

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