Yes and…

I recently listened to a podcast in which a comedienne was interviewed. Apparently, the art of improvision, especially in comedy, comes from being able to say, “Yes, and…” no matter what your fellow actors do. No matter how bizarre a situation they are creating or what happens, you should go with it. The dog is an engineer working on the Mars Rover… yes, and… his stegosaurus sidekick just advised him that armageddon is upon them and they had better launch in the next 24 hours.In comedy, it is only by fully embracing the present situation, without question or hesitation, and then allowing your mind to run wild with the possibilities of what could be, that you can achieve the desired outcome.

This is not too different from life. We often spend a great deal of time and energy fighting against our present reality, especially when it is less than ideal, or far from ideal. No one wants to be ill or in pain. No one wants to have to face the seemingly insurmountable road to recovery that can be long and difficult, or can require more of us than we think we can give, and yet, there is often little we can do to change our reality. Wishful thinking and denial don’t change diagnoses. Avoidance or flippancy can’t remove the requirement of hours of painful rehab or physio. In places of recovery and in seasons of sickness or struggle, we are not all we want to be, but perhaps, we can learn something from the art of improv and start adding, “yes and…”

I am not as healthy as I’d like. Yes, and… I am still alive, and I still have strength to get better.

I am in a painful, frustrating place. Yes, and… I am fortunate to be able to recover in a beautiful setting, with world-class medical professionals attending to my health.

I am stuck here. Yes, and… I have a unique opportunity to be still in a chaotic world.

I am broken. Yes, and… I will heal and grow. I will become different and better because of it.

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