First Alcohol, then Covid... When will I learn to stop assuming?Apr 21, 2022
I knew as soon as I opened my eyes last Monday morning that something was off. I had this sense that my brain was elsewhere, off in the distance and tied to a kite flapping off to get stuck in a tree!
By the time I'd driven to work to have my computer chucked in the back of the car and back home again, my head was beginning to feel the squeeze. The one like an invisible vice. And I thought to myself, "it's ok, I'm not going to get it badly" because I assumed that I was healthy, vaccinated...
It feels a bit old hat to be talking about Covid now that the news and life has moved on. And yet, I never expected it to happen quite like it did!
A week later and I'm typing this as I look enviously out of a window that shows the most beautiful green woods and hidden valley of the Lakes. Enviously, because the boys are off mountain biking and I'm not quite recovered enough to do anything but mild walking. (And actually, I'm not envious of the bonkers biking – that's one sport I find far too bruising and the seats are designed by masochists!)
I never expected that after a week I'd be feeling weak at the knees after a short amble. I never expected that once the symptoms stopped, that my body would still be wanting time to recover. I never expected my mind to be struggling with the wobbles about going back into areas with people! I never expected to stop drinking coffee! So many unexpecteds!
And as I sat on a wall yesterday, thinking about how I was an idiot to assume that I'd be okay with this still largely new virus, just because I'm reasonably healthy and had all my jabs, I picked up on the similarity with the assumptions I used to have about booze.
I never took sick leave from work, I was always in the right place at the right time for my boys, I was busy with a bit of time on the side for exercise like most people, and I dealt with the anxiety and stress by 'relaxing' with wine. And I assumed that just because I didn't mess up in any of those areas, that alcohol wasn't affecting me, that it didn't call the shots. And yet it did. Funny that.
My old boss used to say you should never use the word 'assume' as it makes an 'ass' out of 'u' and 'me'. I hate to say it, but I did 'assume' too much about alcohol and Covid, and they both pretty much hit me unexpectedly.
What have I learnt?
(Apart from 'never assume'!)
This week I'm learning patience and that my selfcare routines matter more than ever. That it helps to listen to my body and not let my head get carried away with wanting to run again before I can amble.
I'm actively looking for alternatives that I can do in my recovering state. Short walks, beautiful gardens, bird spotting (we have a pair of grey and apricot nuthatches in the garden here - my absolute favourites!), driving duties so the boys can do some longer walks end to end. Whatever you're confined by, there are always alternatives. You just need to accept that you need them and then find them.
NLP has helped me to reframe my language this week around how I feel too. Rather than saying to myself "I can't do xx", or "I have to do yy", I'm changing the narratives so that "I get to do zz" and that "doing yy helps me to.."
When you notice yourself sliding into negative language, give this reframing language trick a go and see how much better it makes you feel too.
If any of my ramblings strike a chord with you, or you just want to chat over where you are with someone who 'get's it', drop me a message. I finally got my coffee taste back so I'm back on for the virtual coffees!
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