I took a bad fall hiking two weekends ago, and had to continue walking almost another two miles on the nine-mile trail before reaching the base from where my friends and I started our adventure.
To recover, when I got home I laid low for a few days alternating between taking Epson salt baths and icing my legs.
At first the reprieve from being “a go -getter” felt restless, as I just wanted to be healed and beyond all this “sitting still” time my body was demanding.
Increasingly, I took these moments of self-nurturance to observe a few things:
Bodily injuries (or illnesses) can make us feel vulnerable. It is okay to “need.” I couldn’t feign smiles when my legs were shaky and aching. Instead, I gave myself tender acceptance of my temporary fragile condition and didn’t pretend I felt all right when I was physically hurting.
In the process, I have gained a joy in softening, of not being the “strong one” anymore. I embraced the gentleness within that I so longed for from others.
The “old me” of driven years before would have found a way to hike the following weekend. The “new me” is relishing the slower space of using downtime to get caught up, to connect with friends in a more meaningful way, to rest by sitting in movie theatres watching some of the latest releases and taking long day trips where little walking is required.
Laying low is a great way to bring the pendulum of performing and continually “doing” back to center. I am not so sure I can speed up again too soon. Pacing life a few notches below my normal action mode makes me feel more abundant and content.
To the gifts of slowness,
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The photo below, shot near Lake Pleasant in Arizona, where I was hiking when I fell, was taken by my friend Margaret, who also slipped that day.
Originally published at www.supportmatters.com.
Originally published at journal.thriveglobal.com