This morning I went on my first real run since I was sick in March. After having spinal meningitis I thought I would check back into full swing in about half the doctor's recommended time. That is usually how life works, I get an estimate and I have to change the measurements. For four children it should take twenty minutes to get out the door, five minutes per child of forgotten socks, needing to pee and homework in the recycling (by accident of course). I read this rule at some point and decided it was insane. I could not spend forty minutes trying to get out the door so I halved it, and twenty minutes is about right. Making dinner I need to change recipe amounts, back to school budgets I need to make that dollar stretch four times as far, and so on. So getting sick, and in turn getting better, should be a typical Otis conversion.
I was wrong, it is very difficult to get better trying to take care of so many other people's needs while attempting to honor my own. After childbirth I gave my self a little more slack. I took naps with the baby and drank my mothers green kefir concoctions (they work mum). After being sick I was disappointed in myself for being weak. I felt like I had somehow failed my family and myself for not being above average, for not being healthier and balancing my life with impeccable grace under pressure.
As I was running this morning I was thinking about the process of healing, about how my priorities were re focused, my fault of judging myself and others was quieted, my faith challenged and lovingly tended and how getting sick was well timed in my motherhood journey. It has FELT slow for me, the doctor said 6 months until I am 100% but was happily surprised to see my health index back up at 6 weeks. At the time of my sickness I had a condition characterized by low white blood cell count, or low blood levels of infection fighting neutrophils, Neutropenia. By the end of April my blood counts were great, all other vitals were right where they should be. But it took time to trust my body again, to allow my downtime or take the time I needed to workout.
Today, as I did my second lap around Como I passed the Emergency Room doctor that helped me in March. She took the time to do the right tests, admit me with as little fear as possible and get me on the road to getting home to the children and Sheff. She did not recognize me but seeing her was a sign for me. As I did the last half mile I offered up the experience. I allowed my mind to do a loop of gratitude for being down and out. For the chance to re think my habits, the reminder to spotlight health and prayer. And lastly, to allow my self the gift of imperfection.
For the photo of Como Lake sunflowers, thank you