Get Out of Your Own Way: Growth at 36,000 Feet

Jennifer (Jenn) Powell avatar

by Jennifer (Jenn) Powell |

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I find peace at 36,000 feet. Quasi-calm. My surroundings and I move in unison with little friction. The hum of the Boeing 737 lulls me to sleep.

Tranquility is a powerful provocateur when turbulence is your norm, a juxtaposition to the bed of billowy clouds below. As if on cue, the plane begins to shudder. Turbulence atop the clouds. A reminder that life includes both. And a reminder that peace is possible amid a storm.

You can achieve a state of being despite circumstance. That the “right” moment must appear is a fallacy. Passivity is not conducive. It provides a false sense of complacency. If the moment does not present itself, we excuse ourselves. It only furthers a false sense of security.

Construct your vision to support any given situation. Growth occurs when we exit our comfort zone. I have officially exited mine.

I put so much on hold because of my health. The narrative that I could not succeed supported my fear of failure. I played small. I justified doing so in the name of chronic pain, endometriosis, and multiple sclerosis. While they can be challenging, each can create unexpected possibilities. These challenges were merely detours. I was the roadblock.

I told myself it existed for my safety. I convinced myself that I did not need more. I fooled myself into believing that the status quo was OK. But something within refused to settle. The lies that once stifled my dreams were ineffectual. I wanted more. And at that moment, I believed. I believed in who I was, who I was not, and who I will never be. With one action step, I took my leap of faith.

In the absence of an alternate route, I forged my path. I threw away maps, as they illustrated someone else’s journey. This journey was guaranteed to be all mine.

Part of life is navigating around the unforeseen. We discover ourselves on dirt roads. We cultivate skill sets when we break down. We get to know ourselves when we retool. We build confidence when we overcome. And when at last we get out of our way, we discover that we can. And we do.


Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.


Marg Ashton avatar

Marg Ashton

Very inspiring sharing, thank you. Faith and hope is what we need to keep reminding ourselves. Toss out all the negativity.
Keep flying,

Jennifer (Jenn) Powell avatar

Jennifer (Jenn) Powell


What beautiful words! Thank you for sharing your radiant self!



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