and then it all came crashing down
Have you ever known that you should slow down, known that you should say no more often, do all the stuff you’re told to do: eat the right foods, exercise every day, meditate, do yoga, drink more water… yes, if you DRANK MORE WATER (filtered, with fluoride, without fluoride, tap, mineral, never bottled because that stuff requires SO MUCH OIL, chilled, room temperature, hot, but not hot from the tap, hot from the kettle, with lemon, not during eating, not within two hours before or after eating- shit what if I have exercised and I’m thirsty?), YOU WOULD NOT HAVE GOTTEN INTO THIS MESS! I digress- you know that you should slow down and your body starts to give you these little signs of illness but you ignore it. You ignore the signs because in 2013 if you are lucky enough to be someone for whom getting a University degree is assumed and the idea of a career is normative and you give a bit of a damn about something (insert relevant activity, passion, raison d’être) or if you’re a perfectionist* it is simply not acceptable to let go.
For anyone who has some idea that they’re over-committed, overworked and headed for a 22 g deceleration**, I would like to say, stop NOW. Listen to your body, say no to others and yes to yourself. However I know how hard that is. I know that there is often pressure from yourself and/or others to be available, committed and hard working. It is hard to have time off and not feel guilty when others have to take on what you have dropped. For me, it has been hard to say no to climate activism. Hell, it is pretty hard not to feel guilty about taking time off from an issue that will potentially destroy our planet!! How’s that for pressure?
But now I’m pretty unwell. I mean, I’m not dying any more than most people who aren’t being born, but recent blood tests indicate that I probably have an autoimmune disease and goddamn don’t I know it! I used to get out of bed and look like this:
Now I generally look more like this:
The Uni summer break has just about arrived and originally I planned to be working full time to save money, volunteering part time, and spending as much time at the coast as possible. It is only just occurring to me now that if you’re doing one thing full time, there isn’t time left to do other things part time. Oh dear. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to work and save money, my volunteering commitments will have to lessen or stay the same rather than amping up as I had hoped, and without much dosh, I probably won’t be getting away as much as I’d hoped either.
BUT I do have a small but wonderful support network of friends and family, my partner deserving a special mention and because of this I know everything will be okay. I think this summer will be a good opportunity to reflect more, read, learn and share. Hopefully I’ll be posting up here regularly and seeing if I like this writing thing.
*I dislike that word because it is a generalisation that is too often used as a masked put-down, however I cannot think of a more appropriate alternative at this time.
** Ever heard of John Stapp? http://www.youtube.co/watch?v=s4tuvOer_GI