Bridges & Scenic Roads: by Maria De León

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“Nothing comes ahead of its time and nothing ever happens that did not need to happen.” Byron Katie

As I sit here fighting another bout of bronchitis, yet again; I am inclined to feel a bit sorry for myself. But, all I have to do is stop and look at all the road I have covered over the last year to quickly shake this silly notion.

I have never been a very patient person especially when traveling. I like to zoom, zoom. I am a highway kind of girl. I remember the first time my husband and I took a trip toghter as newly weds to visit his family, he thought it would be nice to take the Natchez Trace Parkway. I nearly lost it; it seemed we had travelled for an eternity at a turtles crawl (can’t travel faster than 45mph). Had I been driving, I would have probably gotten several citations or found a way to get off faster than immediately.Image result for beautiful architectural wooden bridges

At the time, I was not interested in the beautiful sights we encountered along the way nor in the fauna present. I simply wanted to arrive at our destination. This was the state of my life at that time-pretty much rush, rush between work, family, commitments, conferences, etc.. I was always looking ahead at the next destination never really enjoying the moment for the most part until Parkinson’s decided to pay me a visit and make its self at home. Suddenly,  the breaks came screeching on putting a stop to all my senseless running around.Image result for beautiful architectural bridges of the world

Over the last decade, I  have had to learn to enjoy those backroads and not be so concerned about the destination. We all know that living with a chronic illness like PD  permeates into all aspects of our lives affecting everyone which comes into close proximity. thus, more than ever we have to learn to find a balance and enjoy each moment as it comes and not be paralyzed or fearful of what might happen next. Living with PD is truly unpredictable day to day and even hour by hour. Friday was another perfect example of this. I woke up feeling great attended a GO Red luncheon for women with my friend. We had a blast but by the  time I got home in the afternoon, I was out of commission screwing up all the evening and weekend plans.

Instead of worrying about reaching some obscure destination, or fretting over the plans that have been ruined (these days I prefer calling it altered rather than ruined). I have come to enjoy those unexpected detours along the way which may lead to unexpected finds like an old wooden bridge or a beautiful waterfall. These sometimes brief other times extended detours through backroads and scenic routes has helped me discover myself, my true friends, my family and many other people who suffer chronic illnesses which I might have not gotten to know otherwise. This weekend I got to enjoy the company of my daughter and husband although from a distance since I did not want to contaminate them.Image result for beautiful architectural bridges of the world

When I find myself feeling restless and impatient like today, I remind myself that those  eternally winding back roads are helping me build a bridge to my ultimate destination. As we know some bridges are short and some are much longer. Image result for beautiful architectural bridges of the world

Those bridges took years to build some even had to be rebuilt.  Meantime, i keep moving forward even if I feel it’s only one step a day. Someday my bridge will be completed and it will be a grand architectural monument just like those magnificent bridges, I love (e.g. Sydney Harbor Bridge, the London Bridge, and the Golden Gate Bridge to name a few).  My life like those grand architectural structures will stand as a testament of a victorious life which conquered adversity and overcame big odds to bring beauty and function to others.

Thanks to my illness, as my favorite poet Frost once penned, I have taken the road less travelled and this has made all the difference…

I hope today wherever you may find yourself, you find the strength and courage to enjoy those unexpected detours in life and beginning anew building those magnificent bridges.

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all rights reserved by Maria De León