The Well Magazine Spring 2013 - Page 30

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 23 CONTINUED FROM PAGE 14 Journey to Healing These Three Words Connie Johnson will receive her master’s degree this May. So I’m going to get some more of that from them. HIV is just one of the things that people may need to be healed from. Be honest with yourself about why you do what you do. If we gave ourselves permission to be honest about what we’re going through some of the decisions that we make, we wouldn’t. There was a point in time where I refused to take the HIV medication. I saw how sick they could make you. I wouldn’t go to the doctor. I ended up back and forth in the emergency room. The doctors said, “There’s nothing we can do for you.” I had AIDS and I was on my way out. I sat in the hospital bed, waiting to die. My sister came to see me. My aunt and uncle came and looked down at me and cried. I felt like I was my mother all over again. When my family left the room, I cried out to God. “Lord, I don’t want to go out like that. Whatever you want from me. You’ve got it.” In that moment, my real healing began. Surrender is a process. I decided this isn’t my life. I couldn’t do things my way. My way was going to end with my life in the ground. Physical healing is good. We need strong bodies. But through that surrender, I Connie Johnson is a lifelong learner was emotionally healed. whose educational pursuits will result in a master’s degree in social justice development from Loyola University in To donate to Connie’s Chicago. She is also a spoken word trip to Kenya, go to: artist and inspirational speaker. She is campaigns/6QXN3 an aspiring author and is writing her memoir, Survivor’s Song. Bennett and her husband, Albert on their wedding day in 2012 For my beloved husband, I had yet to create the infamous “Honey Do” List of house renovations (with the addition of a fence project for the front yard being at the top) when a severe stomach ache had me rushing him to emergency three weeks earlier, prompting surgery for a bowel obstruction the same day. Everything was so quick, so urgent that I had no time for fear or worry. Neither were an option; I needed him to know that I had his back. For better or worse, in sickness and in health. But on this day, his energy was driven by a mixture of anger and fear. And it was palpable, thanks to an erroneous call from the hospital's cancer center the day before "confirming" his appointment, an appointment we had yet to learn about from his surgeon. My role was to keep the energy and focus positive, even when I had no idea what the doctors would be telling us. The big C was the last thing we expected as newlyweds; after all, we had yet to use all of our wedding gifts. But just as the surgeon was led to the three carcinoid tumors (that would have gone undetected in their location had it not been for the pain), I had to remind him that God would lead us through whatever news came our way. For my soul mate, I held him tight and uttered these words: God is able. January 8, 2013 will forever Felicia Bennett is the editor and be the day I let go of the hurt founder of The Well-Heeled Sociof a little girl who felt abanety lifestyle blog. She is the social doned in order to assume the media manager for a UK-based company, and has written for role of a strong woman who Magazine BLU, about...Time, needed to be there in every her Rochester and Relate magaaspect for her husband. zines. 30 The Well Magazine/ Spring 2013