We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong.
It’s the same amount of work.
This year has been, without a doubt, the most frustrating year so far in terms of my health. I have been in the ER twice. Once for an emergency surgery January 2nd, and the other this past week with my foot.The doctors at the ER have not a clue about what going on with my foot, so I’ve been told to elevate and ice and hope it gets better on its own. Otherwise, my next step is to see a foot specialist.
I was planning on getting back into my gym routine, I’ve been really into the LiveFit Program by Jamie Eason. I even re-enrolled in my gym membership after not being able to go since last April. I was able to complete Day 1 before my foot spazzed out.
This past year has certainly had some dark moments where I felt miserable, helpless, and very much alone. But I do believe there are lessons to be learned in any experience you are given.
If we focus on what we are learning about ourselves, about others, and about life, then we can start to truly appreciate our struggle as more than just ‘something that is happening to me’.
Maybe we can start to understand that our struggle is not unique, our struggle is part of the human experience.
And with any experience there is something to be learned.
1. Efficiency is a must.
It’s crazy to think of the amount of time and energy that is wasted throughout the day, just because I’m thinking in the moment, not planning my actions.
Want to make coffee? Here are the normal amount of actions I take to make a pot of coffee:
walk to coffee maker, take out carafe, walk to sink, dump out contents of carafe and fill with water, walk to coffee maker, pour water in coffee maker and put carafe back into place, grab used filter, walk to garbage (which is near the sink) to throw away filter, walk back to coffee machine, grab new filter, walk to fridge, fill filter with coffee, walk back to coffee machine to put filter in place, push start. Realize you have no clean cups, walk back to sink to clean a cup, walk back to coffee machine to fill cup, walk to fridge for creamer, walk back to coffee machine for sugar, walk back to drawer (near sink) for spoon, walk back to cup (near coffee machine) to stir. Enjoy.
Now imagine following those steps using crutches. nope.
Now my thought process is ‘how can I do this task in the least possible steps so that I don’t exhaust or hurt myself?’
Necessity (and immobility) makes me have to think about things a bit more, and plan out every step I’m going to take before I take it. From start to finish.
Now imagine if I could apply that to the rest of my life
What an amazingly efficient person I could be!
2. Our bodies are amazing, and fragile, and resilient.
The human body’s ability to carry a life inside of a life is just amazing. We don’t have to think about it (although, if you’re pregnant, you do…every second of the day…) it just grows. And if there’s something majorly wrong with our baby’s growth, our bodies know what to do. All with little to no intervention from us.
To grow a life, every. single. thing. must be perfect.
Every cell, every molecule, every second must be perfect. In perfect time.
We are so complicated, and when everything works together, a life is formed, grown, born, and lived. But we are also fragile. At any moment our entire life could change, or end. Just like that.
But we are also resilient. We are able to spring up, to bounce back after being stretched or knocked down.
We recover quickly from difficult conditions. We adapt quickly to change. We use our feet when our hands aren’t available. We use our ears to see, our hands to speak, our touch to hear, our hands to walk, our feet to write. We use our minds to create and to stretch our abilities.
We are constantly redefining what it means to be human, and what the human body is capable of.
3. Giving myself grace
And I don’t mean grace as in ‘walking delicately’, or ‘having a pleasing appearance’, neither of which are happening for me right now…
Giving myself grace means being kind to myself, accepting that I’m not perfect, my house isn’t perfect, my life isn’t perfect. In fact, I’m a mess, my house is a mess, and my life is a mess. But you know what? I’ve gotta be O.K. with that and be kind to myself. I set high goals for myself and my life, but if I don’t meet those goals I’ve gotta be O.K. with that. I’ve gotta be O.K. with my house looking like a tornado ran through it on any given day. I have to know that if all the laundry isn’t done, or all the emails aren’t responded to, and if all our meals aren’t homemade, that’s OK!
And if I can extend that grace to my husband, my friends, my family, coworkers, politicians, and strangers I can make the world a place that’s little bit nicer in which to live.