When I was in my twenties, it was nothing for me to run around work and finish all my goals in a short time. It was fairly easy, despite severe PCOS, to manage a new home as a newlywed. I remember unpacking and having the entire house set up before a surgery to alleviate the pain I was having.
When I received a compliment, it was worth the time. The pace. The stress I forced on myself and inflicted on others. My method received enough encouragement that I lived on that routine for years. Through my season working out of the home. Having children. Raising children. Dealing with chronic issues that affected our daughter. Losing my father. Moving away from our entire family, friends, and church. Living in a new state. Learning how to obtain services for our child. Managing menopause at 37. Healing from a hystectomy at 38. Dealing with teens. Losing in-laws. Surviving child heartbreak. Balancing crazy hormones. Writing. Books. Marketing books.
It worked until 2016 when my hormones decided to go crazy. Thing is, I knew the stress I was putting myself through and knew my body was rebelling. But as long as I could put a bandaid on it all, I went right back to the circus called my life.
Until February of this year. It started as a sinus infection and bronchitis. It took three or four antibiotics and a steroid to clear it out. Through that sickness and beyond it, I was more than tired. I was exhausted. My goals went from several categories and steps per day to getting our daughter off to school and home. Bonus if I cooked a dinner that wasn’t chicken patties and fries. I needed not just a power nap, but naps. When I stood, I felt dizzy. I had periodic heart palpitations. I was up every hour on the hour. It was the craziest thing.
I visited with my endocrinologist and although I don’t have all the answers yet, I learned enough to find direction and discover quite a bit about myself.
Our bodies are so sensitive. And I was pushing my adrenals way, way, way too hard. I’m working on improving that, and in doing so, I’ve been forced to accept a truth that’s been there all along.
Real Superwomen (or men) sit down. Years ago I found enough healing in Christ to stop doing things just for approval. However, as a wife, mom, author, volunteer, I kept taking on and doing, doing, doing. When my body made it clear I wasn’t drinking enough water or sleep, I pushed through. I’ve been paying the price.
Although I’m still in learning mode, beyond the supplements and medical side of things, I’m delegating more. Often I would take on more than I needed because I’d work faster or in my opinion, accomplished things better. My husband would offer to help and I’d decline knowing he worked all day. Well, I worked as well, but in different ways. If he’s offering, I’m learning to take him up on it. I’m blessed that I make my own schedule, so if I have a heavy day full of appointments or errands, I’m trying to not schedule anything the next day that I HAVE to do. Sure, I usually write or work on marketing, but I don’t add all the laundry, mowing, ministry work and staying up late to watch a movie with my husband. I’ve said no to ministry efforts that I know have enough help, or left early when I knew they’d be fine without early.
Will I always have to make these choices? Maybe not with such specific detail, but I think a lot of changes I’m making need to be my lifestyle. I thought I’d feel “less than” doing these things. Guess what? I feel brave for speaking up. Wise for finally stopping that recumbent bike ride when the timer goes off even though the inspiring music is still playing.
If you can relate to anything I’m saying and still feel guilty for even thinking about pulling back and making healthy adjustments, there’s no greater example to look to than Jesus. He retreated to the mountains away from the crowds to talk to His dad. Re-focus. Rest. He knew not to push, push, work, work, go, go and He’s Jesus. If Jesus needed to pull back, why wouldn’t you?
I hope as summer winds down and a new school year starts, you take some time apart with your Heavenly Father and ask Him what changes you might need to make. Don’t be afraid if He has answers. Feel brave for obeying. Sadly, few do. You’ve got this because God’s got YOU.
Looking for a quick and satisfying romance before summer ends? Match Made in Heaven will be a free eBook on Amazon Saturday, August 10 and Sunday, August 11. That’s this weekend!