When I finally awoke, this dream flitted into awareness:

Two old cranky women chew on each other and spit out the crud.

This image reveals my psychic rage, doubled in upon itself, a dismemberment like none other. It speaks of Grief’s jaws grinding me, piecemeal.

Only at dawn did the source of my angst surface: exhaustion and weakness short-circuiting last evening’s walk—or “visiting the rooms,” as I call it, in my bungalow. I feared falling and heard myself yell, “Stop this insanity. You can’t do this to yourself!”

Reluctantly, I obeyed, but the war had only begun. It felt like a knife had ripped open a corner of my denial, revealing the scenario of being bed-bound and unable to walk. I continued storming, sleepless hours interspersed by numerous trips to the bathroom, to my word processor, to YouTube, and to the kitchen for snacks.

So disabling and emotionally painful was my obsessive thinking that I never considered its release through opening Recipe for Recovery, Chronic Pain Anonymous’ Big Book. I did so today.

Acceptance of the unacceptable is central to Step One; its practice upends my illusory control over my body’s gradual decline, quiets my chattering mind, and helps focus upon the present moment, in which, alone, grace resides. The death of my body is working out, as is everyone else’s.

Step Two urges me to deepen my faith in Higher Power’s desire to restore me to wholeness, even now as I anticipate eternal life.

Step Three’s decision to surrender my life and will to this Higher Power deepens my willingness to participate in this arduous process, with compassion and gentleness. No more yelling.

And in Steps Six and Seven, I ask Higher Power’s removal of my self-will and arrogance that pitted me against Him last night. No more playing god, at least until the next time, given my humanness.