I've always been active. All through school I took a full load of classes, avoided study halls because they were boring, was involved in sports and clubs and friends... constantly on the go. My professional career has been no different-- committees and coaching and after school activities has been my norm. I've known for the last few years that I've danced a little close to the edge, and I really have tried to back away. This year I did give up a couple of activities, but I ended up picking up a couple of replacements. I thought they'd be less stressful, but... I should have known better. I'm in for the year, however, because, when I say I'm going to do something, I do it.
Flash forward to 2 weeks ago. You all know the story-- pain started at 9 PM. By 2 AM I couldn't take it and we hit the ER. By 5:30 they were shipping me to a second hospital, and I was undergoing surgery for a recently discovered ovarian cyst by 8:15. To say that this little side trip was not in the plans is an understatement. But... even though I knew I was overscheduled, I didn't react. And so my body took care of it for me.
I don't know what I'm going to do from here. A few of the committees I am on have overlapping roles, and with time, those may merge into one committee. They all support my teaching job, in one way or another, so I'm not willing to give up completely. But I also realize I need to make a change in my stress level-- even though I don't feel stressed at all. As my darling brave sis pointed out this week-- I can't help anyone breathe easily if I don't put on my own oxygen mask first.
So my oxygen mask for the rest of the year is going to be slow, but steady progress towards listening to what my body is saying. If I need to miss a meeting, the world will not end. I cannot do it all, and my family must come before work. And my health must come before all of that.
I'm going to need reminders. Please remind me.