A flat tire. A dead battery. We’ve all had them. Regardless of who we call for help or how much we didn’t plan on the inconvenience or expense, it still happens. There is maintenance that can prolong the tire, the battery, or whatever. But when it happens, we’re forced to drop everything and deal with the moment.
Some people have dealt with this not only with mechanical things but also with their own lives. I’ve read stories of people pushing themselves past burnout. They end up in the hospital. Eventually, they’re forced to reevaluate their lives and reorder their priorities. I’ve heard of people “pruning” their commitments. When I read these stories, I always check in with my own life. Do I see myself in their struggles? Wouldn’t I know better than to get to the point of hospitalization?
Well, I’m not in the hospital, thankfully, but I certainly have a “flat tire.” The past few weeks have been a study in keeping up with life stuff while my body told me things weren’t okay. I’ve spent most of my life with things not being okay, so it was normal for me to push through, keep going, believing tomorrow will magically appear with more hours and more energy.
The niggling in the back of my mind that things weren’t okay has become a bull horn in my face. A couple of doctor’s appointments, blacked-out calendar days, and waking up knowing I had caught something confirmed my flat tire. Even when I’ve been sick in the past, I still went to work, still did my usual tasks, just took stuff to mask the symptoms. Well, not this time.
I can’t ignore the stuff I’ve been sweeping under the rug. I have a plan to make things better. It will take a little time. The achiever me wants to keep pushing. The anemic self-care me is standing her ground. First, rest. Next, feel better. Then, put the plan in place to replace the tire. Finally, ensure that this episode doesn’t repeat. Only then can I return to my projects. Are you good at self-care and preventing bigger problems?