Well, the full quote, the title is borrowed from is from St. Exupery’s The Little Prince. It is “What is essential is invisible to the eye.” Some people think that the book, which is in allegory form, is a children’s book, but St. Exupery said he actually wrote it for adults. A pilot who loved to fly, almost more than anything else, he wrote about flying and what he thought about when he was in the air before he died mysteriously in an airplane crash. His other interest was relationships, and why people do the things they do.
The quote has always been a favorite of mine, and so I would like to discuss in this blog what I think is important. As I enter my 6th decade, I have managed to garner what I think is a little wisdom, which I would like to share. (I can see the younger bloggers yawning and signing off now.)
So, in this blog I will talk about the importance of taking care of you, what has given me joy, what has kept me going, some interesting books or people I have met. Because at the present moment I am interested in health, writing and teaching, as well as leadership, there will be information about those subjects as well.
You’ll notice, I first mentioned, the importance of taking care of yourself, so that is what I would like to talk about first.
What prompted this?
I just received some upsetting news a few days ago. One of my nieces, the one with my coloring, in fact, was just diagnosed for the second time with cancer, this time in her throat. What is more unsettling is that she is 33 years young and has two children under the age of five, including adorable Emma.
Being my usual bookish self, I went out yesterday to a second hand book store, and bought every book I could find on the subject. I had some good ones in mind, because the truth is that when I was in my early 40’s, in the middle of an examination I was undergoing to adopt a baby, it was discovered that I had a lump in my throat that the doctor suspected was cancer as well. I know what it is like to live under a bell jar for awhile, and I know that I read everything I could on the subject, and later even certified as a “body therapist”.
I was lucky, my tumor was benign, but I was told nineteen years ago that it might happen again. What I learned from my therapy, was that stress was a major factor, and that depending on genetics and environmental factors, cancers and tumors express themselves in parts of one’s body that express unmet needs, or problems, and that one should listen to one’s body for the “lesson “ to be learned. I also learned about the value of more sleep, relaxing, expressing one’s feelings, and becoming a Type A instead of a Type B.
The problem then, with me, as with my niece, was that I couldn’t figure out how to do this. I was stressed because I had no time, not even time to read; wouldn’t not doing what I was supposed to do create even more stress? If there is a personality that gets cancer, how do you change yourself? Well, fortunately, I am not the only person who has considered the subject.
I will talk about what others had to say in my next blog, but think about this. If you are in an airlines crash, the stewardesses tell you to put on your oxygen mask before even your child’s. If you can’t save yourself, you can’t save him/her, and I will leave you with this quote I read once on a wall, where I studied Bioenergetics:
Where will you live if you wear out your body?
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