I started this week feeling weak. The weather switched over the weekend, and the temperatures fell for the second time this fall season. And just as it had the first time, it left me with a stuffy and runny nose.
I made the decision to rest. While I wanted to spend my Monday at the gym, I chose to spend it at home and also reading for lunch. I was determined to feel better on Tuesday and make it to the gym, but halfway through the work week, I felt worse and ended up leaving early so that I could spend the rest of the day and evening on the couch.
Wednesday I went to work. I felt less nauseus than I had Tuesday, but my throat started burning. I left the office early again and headed to the doctor instead of straight to the couch. There was blood work, a test for the flu, and a strep test. A little over an hour after arriving, I had my diagnosis (strep throat) and a prescription (penicillin).
I joked with the doctor that growing up I always had strep throat over Thanksgiving or Christmas. And I had. But it had been years since I had strep throat and even more years since I was truly sick on the holidays.
I like to think that my body told me I was sick. My venture home on Tuesday had nothing to do with a sore throat just like my call to the doctor had nothing to do with a sore throat. It was an upset stomach and hurting stomach that left me feeling like I couldn't move. But the diagnosis had nothing to do with my stomach.
There was a small part of me that was angry and frustrated with feeling sick. I went a whole week without stepping foot into the gym. And while I kept track of everything I ate, I didn't do the best at making healthy choices. My choices, instead, were all about comfort and ease.
I ate a lot of Panera Bread, noodles and sauce, and then chicken noodle soup out of a can. I drank water, apple cider, and lots of Sprite. I also consumed more vanilla frozen yogurt in the past several days than I had in the past month. I rested on the couch and watched hours of The Biggest Loser and Felicity from Netflix. I considered writing and reading, but I was too exhausted to do either.
Being home was what I wanted. My office closes for Veteran's Day, so I took it one step further and also asked off for the Thursday before. I had plans of hanging curtains and cleaning baseboards. I was determined to dust windows and vacuum floors. I was even excited to venture into the world of deep cleaning.
After a Thursday on the couch, I hoped I would be up for something on Friday, but it didn't happen. I had high hopes for this beautiful Saturday also, but I think those hopes might just be hopes and not turn into reality.
Every now and then, I need to slow down. I need to spend time doing nothing. But a whole week of slowing down and doing nothing is a bit too much for me.
In the past, this sort of a week would have curtailed my hopes of getting healthy. No matter how far I would have come, I still would have quit. Because taking a week off makes it difficult to get back into the swing of workouts and planning meals.
I know that this time, though, a week a of sickness will not curtail my hopes. It won't stop my efforts or keep me from succeeding.
There are a lot of things I am discontent with in my life. A lot of things that I feel just aren't right. It's not to say that I'm not thankful for much of my life, because I am, but there are certain situations that have remained the same for several years that I feel like should be different. But they aren't. I'm trying to accept that while still working towards bettering my life.
It's like being sick. You take what you have and do with it what you can. That's one of the reasons I watched so many episodes of The Biggest Loser. If I couldn't work out, I wanted to continue to be inspired by the transformation working out can be. I wanted to do everything I could to stop the quitting that would have taken place in the past.
My health is something that is in my control. Getting sick is frustrating and a setback. But it doesn't control my journey. And so I won't let anything keep me from becoming the best me I can be.
Maybe along the way I'll see that other things are also in my control. And maybe I'll be able to document my journey to better those things too.
For now, I'm going to clean some, write some, and rest some more. The four-day weekend wasn't what I planned for, but maybe, in His funny way, God gave me what I needed.
(title from "the reckoning" by needtobreathe)