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Weakness seems like such a “dirty” word, a pitiful word. Weakness is to be avoided, hidden and denied. And sure, that’s one way to cope. Sometimes it is a necessary way to cope. In the bigger scheme of things though, the more we deny, the harder things become because we can’t be our true selves. We cannot let others in. We build a wall. We find ourselves dishonest. We are alone.

Admitting weakness may feel like admitting defeat and it may seem like a last resort. But, my sarcoidosis is teaching me something entirely new about weakness:

When I admit my weakness, I am stronger.

When I admit my weakness, I am freed.

When I admit my weakness, I am honest.

When I admit my weakness, I no longer have to pretend to be someone I’m not.

Admitting weakness is a relief.

Vulnerability is scary because we feel unprotected, we are exposed. Yet by accepting our powerlessness, we are strengthened because we are freed from the shackles of denial. We no longer have to pretend and pretending is exhausting. Keeping up appearances zaps us of our energy which is already in short supply and we are in a constant struggle to maintain the fiction, always worried someone will see through the facade we have worked so hard to build.

We are brave when we admit weakness and when we are brave, we are made whole again.

In weakness we find peace.

In weakness we find clarity.

In weakness we are humbled.

In weakness we know better who we are.

Our weakness gives us insight. We are better able to appreciate the power of life’s journey in knowing our weakness and in accepting it. We can be lifted to a higher place in our thinking and we are able to develop an understanding of the true importance and frailty of time through acceptance of our own imperfections.

We are more loving in our weakness.

We are more patient in our weakness.

We do not judge others in our weakness.

Life with a chronic condition is a delicate balancing act. We need strength of mind to cope. But we also need to accept our infirmities so that we can find a new way to live.

So, have no doubt that in our weakness comes strength, for it is only in our weakness that we are awakened to our true selves and only then can we begin to rebuild. And maybe one day realize, the new life we created is in fact better than the old one.