Have you heard of radical acceptance? I’ve been trying it out for a while now. What a great concept. Basically, it’s accepting the things that you have no control over without resistance. By resistance I mean, for example, going to the store and your favorite hash browns are not in stock for weeks at a time. You can:
a) Be angry, and throw yourself fitfully on the floor in the frozen food aisle like I may have done so once or twice very, very long ago.
b) Shove your cart full of groceries away and leave the store immediately, hoping that you find your cherished hash browns elsewhere.
c) Choose to move on and buy the less extraordinary hash browns.
In the past, I would have chosen between choice A and B. But, because I am trying out radical acceptance I chose C in this circumstance. So here I am, making good choices.
Well, after making that good decision I extended my radical acceptance further to the cold weather, and the snow. We all know there is nothing we can do about that.
Since starting to practice radical acceptance and with the support of a very good friend of mine, I went for my first MRI. Please, don’t be alarmed. As I told my father when I get the results weeks after the MRI “the MRI showed nothing.” His reply was “we always knew there was nothing in your head!” We laughed and moved on…But back to the day of the MRI. It was a beautiful snowy day. My good, good friend and I decided to park far away so we could get some steps in. Or maybe it was a stalling tactic on my part. The snow was falling and muffling the usual street sounds. We got inside the hospital and I went for my appointment. I was slightly scared but the whole thing was over quickly and without a hitch.
I swear, it’s always when you’re walking back to the car that you regret parking so far away. Radical acceptance got me to this point and I had to continue. The cold quickly reached every bone in my body and reminded me that I hate being cold. But once again I radically chose to accept that there was nothing I could do about it aside from hurry. I Froze, shivered and walked with the pure heartfelt intent of finding warmth. My friend was trying to keep up with me but was walking far more cautiously than me. I was now sincerely jaded to the beauty of this walk! We got to a 4-way stop sign and I could see the light at the end of this blurry tunnel of radical acceptance. It was the car… I could finally see it. I picked up my pace. We got halfway across the street and some cars had now stopped to let us cross. I got antsy because now I felt watched. I told myself that all of these drivers needed to radically accept that we were crossing here. They all had to wait! It crossed my mind that I should slow down. With every step I took I was aware that I was putting too much emphasis on my heels for someone walking on slippery terrain. Just like that, I felt as light as air. I was soaring like an eagle! Both my boots were up in the air and I had an up-close look at someone’s Bridgestone’s as my head met the icy ground with a thud. It took me a while to even comprehend that I had slipped and fell! I know what you’re thinking, “who hits their head on their way home from an MRI?” yup that’s me.
My friend tried to help me up but I was like Bambi as a newborn, pure elbows and knees meeting ice and snow! Despite the laughter that I heard coming from one of the cars watching the anarchy I still triumphantly got up.
Looking back at it…that was very embarrassing. I could have chosen not to get up but instead, I radically accepted my circumstance and got up with the assistance of my friend and kept walking.
Yes, that day radical acceptance helped me stand up and move on with dignity and class.
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