Cambrian: Opinion

Challenges in your life aren’t you, they’re just stories

Diane Brooke
Diane Brooke

“Change your words, change your life.” — Louise Hay

“Not being able to govern events, I govern myself.” — Michel de Montaigne

“I trust. I am love. I am abundance. I am good health and as strong as needed. Divine one, let me have the ability to fulfill what needs to be, let go of what doesn’t and rest easy knowing it is in your hands.” — The affirmation I wrote on my front door.

As my children have grown, so have I. Friends and family have passed on, leaving holes in my fabric. Holes that sometimes let in a little light, illuminating parts of my being that needed inspection, where I find new chapters in my life story. Stories. I know, I know, always with the stories!

But that is what I tell many clients when they are stuck in something negative or are struggling with an issue: What is your story? This illness/crisis/walker/loss is not you. It is a story.

“I feel like I’m stretched so thin!”

“My world is ripping apart!”

Let the light through those cracks. Let go of what you cannot govern and see what there is available to manage.

We just had a rare visit from a cousin who brought along one of her granddaughters, 15 years of age. My two sisters have not been as blessed with a strong physique as I have been, and neither has my cousin or her husband. They all compared surgery scars and a litany of ailments.

“Wait until you get older — you’ll get to share these stories, too!” my sister said to the young girl.

Oh, dear …

Granted, things wear out, accidents happen, hearing weakens and memory fails. But, I believe how you put those scenarios together can become a sitcom/comedy or a made-for-television drama. I prefer to laugh. I prefer to quit letting things fall apart, too. Luckily, all of the above had many other more wonderful things to talk about besides gallstones, but these things did somehow permeate much of the conversations.

“What? Is there a wedding or a new bikini on the horizon?” my friend chided as he saw me chugging along the boardwalk last week. I’d just that morning decided to take up running again, so I was breaking myself in slowly: run 60 seconds, walk 60, run 60 and so on. I know my face was flushed, and I fairly well “glistened.”

“No, I’m tired of complaining how lazy I am and how inactive I’ve become. I wish to be healthy!”

Of course, my knees will prove the bottom line there. So far, so good.

No, life isn’t always easy and no, you can’t just “think positively” and — poof! — all is well. Wouldn’t everybody just do that if they could? I mean, who wants to feel bad? Yet, sometimes it is more secure for us because it is what we know.

But listen to the story you keep repeating. Is it, “I can’t stand this relationship/job/health issue-that-maybe-I-could-do-something-about/whatever?”

“The only way to get what you really want is to let go of what you don’t want.” – Iyanla Vanzant

Whether you meditate, do hypnosis, journal or repeat affirmations, repetition of a positive position will at least improve things.

I don’t want to lose my flexibility or strength so, if you’ll excuse me, I’ll go do some walking and stretching. “Chapter 653…”

Dianne Brooke’s column appears weekly and is special to The Cambrian. Visit her website at Email her at