Levels upon levels and the big building of recovery

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about buildings. I’m no real estate mogul, and certainly no engineer, but I can’t stop thinking about a building and how it’s constructed from bottom up.

I think of a building in the midst of construction and the stages of development it goes through. More specifically, I think of the levels of a building. How they get built, one on top of the other, each level relying on those below it and the tallest level, stacked up on the rest, claiming the highest height for itself, until it’s replaced by the next level and it becomes a supporting member of the entire structure, just like its brethren below.

Whenever a new level is being built on a structure, be it a 2 story house or a multistory skyscraper, there is so much that goes into making sure everything below is secure before the next level can be completed. Under construction, a new level always looks so awkward, incomplete, and bare. It’s only once it’s finished that suddenly, everything looks right, it all makes sense again and pretty quickly, it’s hard to imagine that building without that added level.

I swear I’m going somewhere with this…

For the last few months, I’ve felt like a massive level has been under construction on my building of recovery. After a spring and summer where I had noticeable, small and large achievements on a seemingly consisten basis, it’s been a….how would I say it….interesting…time recently.

There haven’t been any major breakthroughs I can hang my hat on. I don’t have any big accomplishments to match some of the developments I had in the past, developments I could feed off of and rely upon to propel myself forward.

So I keep thinking of these levels being constructed in buildings and how crucial it is for everything below to be stable, strong and 100% reliable before the next level can be built. I figure that all of the hard work I’m doing now is laying the foundation (pun fully intended) for the next breakthrough. I tell myself that my upcoming accomplishment must be a good one, since it’s needing all of this extra time and attention in the construction phase before it can be completed and realized. I guess in my building metaphor, not all levels are created equal.

Some are constructed and completed soon after the previous ones, while others are those needy, complicated, annoying projects that need all of those extra materials and time before they’re ready to be finished.

I keep telling myself that I can’t stop now, that I’ve put too much time and effort over these last few months building and strengthening everything for the next major breakthrough, and that my hard work will be realized. I’m looking forward to that imminent moment, when the awkward looking phase is over, when the next level has been built and when I can look at the new construction and wonder how it could possibly have existed any other way. Yeah, I’m ready for that moment to come…

27 thoughts on “Levels upon levels and the big building of recovery

  1. Of course you can’t stop.
    Keep in mind that everyone is a totally unique human being and while we don’t always know why, we all heal at different rates and in different ways. Some need drugs. Some need physical therapy. Some need counselling and focused mind exercises. Some need complete rest.

    And some……….well, some just need time. Time to relearn what the old neural pathways did automatically.

    • Yes that’s all true. Especially with this injury, time is of the essence. I’ve realized that nothing comes as quickly as I would like and that I have no choice but to keep plugging away and going. Here’s to NOT stopping… -AB

  2. I can tell you from watching the 5 major buildings under construction here in Redwood City, it does not go quickly. There are almost daily road blocks, lane closures, and annoyances. Even when the shell appears ready for paint, weeks go by and nothing seems to be happening. I would imagine these to be times of great consternation for those of us operating under 21st century attention spans. I think building things is the realm of the contextual thinker. The ones who see a vision and no matter the gravity nor the magnitude, realize that time and diligence are the absolute only way to achieve balance, and ultimately success. In the case of your building, the most important one that can be envisioned, I think it may even be akin to tunneling out of a prison with a set of gem tools. Just yesterday, on a building that was no more than a hodgepodge of studs last week, there suddenly appeared a roof, angled so carefully, sweeping in its facade, and immediately bring the chaos under protective order. Your post was such a lovely metaphor for all of us, and certainly for you. Happy November!

    • Ahhhh you totally nailed what I was getting at with my metaphor! That building your described is exactly it. Looks awkward and strange and then suddenly it all looks totally right. You’re absolutely right that it’s all about the vision and diligence to see the whole project through and that’s what counts. Well, thankfully I’m sticking to my vision and not giving up. I can just feel that something has to come soon…. Big hugs to you amico -AB

  3. As I was reading, I’m thinking, “I totally get this.” What you so beautifully described can be applied to so many things in life. The big & the small. I think sometimes the foundation just needs time to settle, to become a pernanent & stable structure, “earthquake proof”, so to speak. It’s hard not to want to see that next phase of the structure. It’s hard to wait for the finished project, whatever that may look like. But sometimes there’s an emotional building that’s going on as the more visible aspects of the building seem to be dormant. And maybe that too, is just as important, if not more so, than the more tangible results. Think of the phrases we use, such as “building” character, “climbing” to the top. Active words used to describe what looks on the surface to be a passive activity. With any devastating injury, the emotional structure has also been shattered & needs to be rebuilt. I believe, as you write, as you ponder, as you are being forced to learn a patience, the likes of which nobody should ever have to, you are still actively building. You are strengthening that which has already gotten you this far & that which will get you through each phase still to come.
    Melanie Beattie, in “The Language of Letting Go” describes waiting as not being wasted time, that waiting accomplishing things. So know that all the pieces of your structure, the physical as well as the emotional & the spiritual, are all still being worked on in perfect synchronicity.

    • Very well said. I like that idea of waiting not being wasted time as I constantly think about how I’m using my time and what I’m learning as I’m going through this recovery and “waiting” for the breakthroughs. But thankfully, I never think of it as much of a waiting after all. I think of it as something active and I like that you referenced those words that we use in our language to describe those processes of activity and not passivity. I’m glad you got my metaphor. Thanks for your comment as always. -AB

  4. Hi Arash,
    I couldn’t agree more with what Libbie said above, great words of wisdom!!!
    All 3 levels need to be built and time is indeed one of our greatest challenges because we are totally powerless over it.
    What we lost in a split of a second takes so long to to get it back even when we work so hard, but your efforts this far have paid out, you have accomplished so much already, you might not think so but for what is worth take it from someone who is traveling the same road, your hard work will definitely be realized…and that imminent moment you’ve been waiting for will definitely come!
    Have been a bit busy but will be in touch soon till then stay strong and be blessed!

    • Her comments were great, as are yours. Thank you for your support and encouragement. It IS interesting to think that I’m spending so many hours and days and weeks working to get back something that vanished in a matter of a second, just like you said. But I don’t see any other way so I keep going, building those levels… -AB

      • Arash will make time to discuss this further and also exercising, I promise!
        Till then keep on going and carry on building those levels because I can see and know that it is paying off!!!

  5. Hi Arash, What a wonderful metaphor – really for all of us striving for whatever we are striving for. I would want to add that sometimes there is a sudden break through when we least expect it and sometimes when we have forgotten about our goal for a moment. Take heart and soldier on – what else would you want to do? I keep myself inspired by going for whatever I am drawn to – I hope you are able to do that too – whether it is reading or listening to things on the web. Thank you for your efforts – I wish you lots of support from everyone and everywhere – I so look forward to your next break through – thank you for your inspiration.
    Love, Melanie.

    • Thank you Melanie. Your support and continued encouragement mean a lot to me. You’re not the first person who’s mentioned the notion of least expecting a breakthrough. I agree that it’s a bit about detaching a bit about that breakthrough that it will come. It’s always like that in life it seems. The second we detach a bit and stop expecting it, it will come. Thank you for reminding me of that. -AB

  6. Your metaphor is spot on! You are doing a great job of laying the foundation for more growth! Just blame the slow construction on the economy! 🙂 That’s what all of my architect have done! Fortunately, the economy is turning around and they are starting to see growth, and I know you will be seeing changes and growth, too – and soon!
    Sending you healing and restorative energy as you continue on this path!!

  7. Arash, very well-considered post. On my club swim team we always talked about ‘putting hay in the barn’ to say that all the hard work we put in over the season, when nothing seems to be going well, will come to bear in the big meet, when the time is right. Props to you for your unwavering vision that all that hay you’re putting in the barn, all that framing and finishing work on the building, will eventually culminate in what you desire. You want it with every fiber, and your actions illustrate that – and that’s what counts.

    • Every fiber indeed my friend. Thanks for the encouragement. I like the hay in the barn metaphor too. Props to both of us for continuing on this arduous yet rewarding path -AB

  8. Arash! I’m always reading your posts! Tears of felicidad when I read about your proposal to Brita!
    With all your constructions soon will be at “Arash city” with the most original and amazing buildings!
    Big hugs! Marian (La primis de Bryan Rees)

    • Siempre te recuerdo Marian! I’m looking forward to Arash City and you will be invited for the opening party when the city gets its next buildings completed. 🙂 Un abrazo -AB

  9. I look forward to your emails (not something I say about most of what I get) and they remind me to pray again for your recovery and the encouragement you need to keep on keeping on. I can’t help but think that when we run and jump and enjoy truer life in heaven that those who have gone through what you have will enjoy the bliss even more then those who have not.

  10. Pingback: My hips don’t lie | Arash Recovery

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