In general, I make it a habit to listen to my body.
If it tells me to sleep, I sleep. If it tells me to get to the gym, I get to the gym. And if I have any cravings for foods, I usually take it as a sign that my body needs to be replenished with something.
So when a few weeks ago (okay maybe a month ago) I got sick, I listened.
I got rest. I took vitamins. I took a break from the gym. I slept a lot.
But the symptoms—congestion, coughing, sore throat, fever, exhaustion… persisted.
I upped the anty! More sleep! More vitamins! Smoothies with immunity boosts! Hot baths with immunity bath salts (yes, I did this).
And still, I wasn’t better.
But here’s the thing. Some days I would feel better! So, I would foolishly think I was fine, go about my day and not go to the doctor.
Then I’d start to feel crappy again. And so the cycle continued. Good two days, off two days, better three days, off three days.
That thinking propelled me to a walk-in medical center—with papers in hand to grade while I waited! As I described my symptoms, the doctor nodded as if he had been hearing about it all day. He was concerned that this had been going on for weeks and that when he listened to my breathing it sounded “crackly.”
One chest x-ray later, I was diagnosed. Walking pneumonia!
He wanted to write me out of work. I explained that wasn’t possible since I just started work.
Doctor’s orders: He wrote out prescriptions and sent me on my way, with me promising to get plenty of rest and to drink lots of fluids.
As I waited at the pharmacy for my scripts to fill, I was mad at myself.
I should have listened to my body more closely, gotten to the doctor sooner. I spend so much time worrying about everyone else, but somehow when it comes to me, I just push along like no big deal.
I feel a lot of us do that.
We tell each other to “take care,” when we aren’t even doing the same for ourselves.
When it was time to pay, the pharmacist asked if I wanted the inhaler or not. It was much more costly than the other two meds. I said no, it was fine. I would just pay for the others.
Then I stopped myself. What was I doing? I was ignoring my body again!
“No, on the second thought, I will get it. If that’s what I need to help me get better, that’s what I need.”
The pharmacist nodded and agreed. “You are better off getting it.”
Again, I was mad at myself! If I had been at the pharmacy to pick up the medicine for someone else, I wouldn’t have hesitated to pay the cost, to get what my loved one needed to heal.
Universe, I think this might be a lesson on making sure I am taking care of myself and simply treating me the way I would treat anyone else I love.
We all need to be sure to take care of ourselves first or we won’t be able to do anything for anyone else. We all need to check in with our bodies more than we do and then we actually need to listen.
Message received. I’ll work harder at this!
So today I am listening to my body.
Body’s orders: Lounge in sweats, watch the Super Bowl and nap when possible.