I have been at home with bronchitis for over a week now. My energy levels are low. My lungs feel heavy. My need for sleep seems endless.
I am also one of those women* afflicted with the ‘superwoman syndrome‘ — the feeling of needing to be super-productive, super-happy, super-beautiful and super-kind-to-everyone, all the time (check out Dr. Mary Pritchard’s Blog if you’re interested in learing more about what she calls the superwoman syndrome and enoughness issues!).
If you relate to the SuperwomanSyndrome, you may know how difficult it is to be limited to a fraction of your mental and physical capacities… For me, the first few days I was torn between wanting to crawl up a wall and being paralyzed by self-loathing for not being healthy (and able to be productive!). Because, of course, I was blaming myself for becoming sick. Even worse, my inner critic (who likes to rear her head at these kinds of occasions) jumped at the chance and suggested that I might only be “faking it”.
Well, they say that in every challenge lies an opportunity to learn. So here is what I am in the process of learning:
Recovery is slow.
Recovery takes energy.
If I choose to throw that energy into hating myself, I have less energy to recover.
Recovery is a mindset.
And the most important one:
Slow is beautiful!
Constant availability has become the norm, but my body is simply putting a physiological limitation on that demand. I now take this as a beautiful gift. A gift which has made me realize how little activities fit into my waking hours, if I do them mindfully. And how rewarding it can be, to just sit on my couch, a cup of coffee in hand and know:
I have no where to go. Nothing to do. Everything IS. I can simply BE.