You Are Smart, Not Weak

As I prepare for another wanderlusting adventure, I was struck by food poisoning Monday night. I am recovering, but I am not the most patient patient. (Pun intended)

Most of my doctors will comment about how stoic I am. They will give me knowing looks when I am in their offices, and shake their heads when I meekly say, it is a five, when they know it is really a ten.

It isn’t that I try to be stoic. I am an overachiever and it isn’t in me to say die. Even last year when I was battling lyme, I would attempt to run when I really should have been resting.

Yesterday morning I was suppose to meet my cousin who by the ay wins cousin of the year award (more later) for yoga. Hot yoga. Yoga in a heated room of roughly one hundred degrees. After a night of throwing up, and little sleep I was sure, I could make it.  I can’t say sense prevailed because my body was exhausted and I passed out again ending my I am woman, I can do it, despite unable to move very easily before feeling like I am going to faint.

But I totally could have taken a sixty minute hot class.

There have been times when I have had other brilliant moments. Case in point when my back was spasming with every inhale and exhale and yet still went to a hot class. I could barely move and the transition from chatturanga (essentially a lowered push up) to up-dog to downward dog was impossible. Thankfully my mentor was teaching the class, and I had told her before hand. She gave me lots of TLC and even helped make it better with some loving assists.

I never should have been in the class. I openly admit the stupidity of my actions. And several years later I still share that story with clients and friends alike.

We live in a society where we preach self-love and self-care, yet the minute we show weakness we are reprimanded. Told to push through it. Be strong. Fight the pain.

A perfect example are the four climbers who died on Mount Everest this past week. They are the epitome of what an athlete is, putting untold stress on their bodies, reaching the top of the world. a feat that is not just courageous but admirable. Yet with that also comes a battle of the wills. On one side of the coin, it is what gets them through the harshest elements, fighting mental and physical anguish. It is also what can lead to stupidity, to a ignoring the warnings of what your body is saying.

Reports have said it was due to altitude sickness. A sickness that could have been prevented from escalating, if they had listened to their bodies and turned back.

Those of us who are athletes, type A’s, and overachievers, we have ingrained in us a never die mentality. Fight to the finish, even when our bodies are screaming goat flashing billboards telling us to stop.

To stop isn’t being weak. I get it. It certainly feels like it. Last year, there were days I felt like a failure for sleeping instead of running, doing yoga, skating, going to school, running errands, working twelve hour days, and going out for drinks with friends. Who needs sleep anyway?

Your body does when it is sick. Your body does when it is injured. We aren’t weak for stopping to take notice.

We are SMART. Being stuck in bed sucks. It is boring and aggravating and you can only binge watch so many shows until your brain turns to mush.

But if we stop and give ourselves the rest and love we need. We are less likely to be back in bed in a week or two weeks, because we didn’t give ourselves the time to recover.

My cousin reminded me of that fact when she brought popsicles, tea, GF crackers, and soup.

Getting ready to leave in a few days, I was planning on picking up a few staples to get me through. Alas spending the night over the porcelain throne, meant I had to cry uncle and scrap those plans along with the hot yoga. Thus my cousin was a godsend with tummy loving food.

While I was itching to say screw it and struggle through my day, I am glad I didn’t. Losing one day and being able to be a hundred percent productive today is well worth it to me.

It isn’t being weak. It is being smart.

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