What Being Sick Taught Me

Out of nowhere last week I found myself sick in bed with strep throat. I resisted being sick at first, but then I realized there was no changing how I felt and I might as well relax into it.

When I finally let myself rest, I was reminded of 5 important things that can help me whether I am healthy or sick.

1. Crying is great – In general, our culture does not support crying for no reason at all. As a natural crier over almost everything big or small, I find I cry a lot when I am sick.

Crying is great because it helps move energy and release tension from the body. When I realized I was getting sick, and I resisted it, tension began to build up. Once I succumbed to the illness and let my tears go, the resistance and tension released.

 

2. Being nice to yourself is important – the yogic ethical practice of ahimsa or non-violence helps heal you. At first I judged and tried to push myself. Then I realized the dishes and work could wait, and I really needed to care for myself. So what if I needed to sleep or lay in bed watching bad tv shows! I stopped being hard on myself and thanks to lots of rest, I began to feel better.

 

3. Affirmations are powerful – I am a big fan of Louise Hay, and her app – Heal Your Body A-Z. When I first started getting sick, I found negative thoughts starting to populate my mind. Then I remembered how powerful Louise Hay’s affirmations can be for me. So I searched for my symptoms in her app and started repeating the associated positive affirmation.  This may not have taken days off my illness, but it did put me in a better mental state.

 

4. Gentle yoga poses in bed make it easier to get through the day – I found my joints and muscles aching. With a fever I couldn’t really move from my bed, so I improvised and tried some gentle movements that didn’t require me actually vacating the haven of my bed. Simple movements like bringing one knee to my chest at a time really helped.

 

5. Being dramatic makes you realize how it really isn’t a big deal and ‘this too shall pass’ – Being sick sucks, but it is not the end of the world. Once I let the tears go, was nice to myself, told myself positive things, and carefully moved a little, I realized it was just a little cold and would go away soon enough. Allowing for these stages of recovery and even some drama with tears puts it all in perspective. The day will come when I don’t have the sniffles anymore. It is easy to forget that ‘everything is already okay’ when we don’t feel great. Allow space for a crappy day and eventually the sun will shine again and you will remember that you can live light, because everything is already okay.

 

Live Light Practice:

Are you feeling under the weather or perhaps stressed about something? Take a moment to check in with yourself. Notice any resistance you are holding in. If you can, let yourself cry to release tension. If that doesn’t work for you, try reminding yourself that ‘this too shall pass’.


Shanti,

Liza