One gift of being a bit under the weather is that it slows everything down.
After Jeb went through a fever and nausea last week (post-Halloween-induced, I’m convinced), I’ve been hovering on the edge of health myself the last few days. I haven’t been sick in ages, but I could feel something wanting to tip me over the into illness.
Not wanting to follow Jeb’s course, I immediately began drinking mugs of ginger-turmeric tea, ingesting healthy doses of Echinacea, and chewing big chunks of noni fruit leather.
As I sensed my fragile state, I was aware of my fear of getting sick, and my very clear resolve that I did not want disease to overtake my system.
I also noticed my words when speaking about my condition. So easily, I wanted to summarize my state by simply repeating a common phrase used when describing attempts to stave off illness, “I think I’m fighting something.”
However, I would pause at “fighting.” Because I don’t want to fight. How can health be nurtured if the body is a war zone? Besides, when you’re feeling less than 100%, the last thing you have energy for is a battle.
Taking this perspective further, I entertained the idea that my sore throat and exhaustion were quite possibly allies. Emissaries, sent to slow me down, lay me out. Cleanse me of all routine and running. I dared consider that malady could be a healing.
That’s not to say that I wanted the funk to settle in for the long-term in the house of my human body. My little “non-enemy” messengers were certainly indicating I was out of balance. But I changed the way I was thinking about them.
There is spaciousness when resistance is released. A peace when there is no enemy.
And power in our words. So, I shifted my vocabulary.
As I sipped my steaming cup of ginger tea, I would say that I was bringing myself back into balance. Not fighting anything, just redirecting.
And even a little submitting. As in the instance of my morning walk, which is typically brisk, often followed by a jog, and usually an hour.
Despite my fatigue, I decided to get some circulation in my veins, even if it meant I moved at a snail’s pace. In fact, as I set foot on my familiar path, I watched a snail in slow-mo, moving across the grass as a gentle reminder.
What unfolded was an abbreviated amble. No hills, no jog, half the distance. Bucking routine, I sat and watched the sunrise. Moving at a slower pace, I noticed flowers opening in the morning sun. I took photos of feathers and leaves.
Joggers passed me by as I meandered. I didn’t need to keep up. I had my mission. I was taking cues from the messengers. Slowing down. Coming in to balance.