The last few months have been stressful, draining, life-changing, and healing. I put way too much stress on my body and mind. As a result, I broke. First was my body. For months, I had been feeling like something was wrong. I couldn’t give my all in workouts and despite seeing countless “experts,” I couldn’t get a reason why. Eventually, I backed off, modified, took extra rest days and eventually stopped working out altogether.
If you know me, you know that’s the hardest thing I could ever decide to do, but I think God had a reason. We do a yearly fundraiser at our school district and the night of the event, I planned to participate in some games. I was fine throughout the whole night, but at the very end, in the very last event, it happened.
There was a whole group of us waiting for our turn in the last game of the evening and coincidentally, my partner and I were in the final position to participate. As I stood up to get into position for the start, I heard a pop and knew it wasn’t good. I limped over to the rest of my team PRAYING that we would finish the event without needing my partner and I. God heard me. We got all of the points we needed and I didn’t even have to jump in.
We finished the event, won 1st place (had to throw that in) and the rest of the evening was spent celebrating over drinks at our local spot. I was hurting by the end of the night. Adam brought me home and we decided to ice it and see how I felt in the morning. We were leaving for our honeymoon the following Tuesday.
I woke up Saturday and couldn’t put any weight on my right side. We headed to the ER and long story short, they found no breaks or fractures, but sent me home in a brace and crutches. I was told that I’d need an MRI and that it was most likely meniscal. I was fortunate to get an appointment on Monday, have an ultrasound and a shot of cortisol followed by that MRI. Low and behold, I tore my meniscus and was going to need surgery.
We headed to our honeymoon and made the very best of it, but I was so sad. I spent the rest of the week in a wheelchair. Each day, I tried to find a reason to smile. In the back of my mind, though, I knew that I was in for a painful road to recovery and zero workouts. I hated that thought. Working out has been my outlet for 10 years. It’s the thing that keeps me balanced and calm. I was a wreck.
We came home from Florida and I scheduled the surgery. In the meantime, I’ve had good days and bad days. I’ve had super sore days and stiff days. I’ve felt like I have zero control over my knee and that’s a really hard pill to swallow. But, God is slowing me down.
I truly believe that everything in life happens as a part of God’s plan. We may not understand it or agree with it at the time, but I trust and believe wholeheartedly that optimism and positivity will always serve you well when going through a hard time.
For me, I see this as an opportunity to adjust my priorities and reevaluate what I want in the months to come. I look forward to starting a family and perhaps this situation is a way to slow me down and get focused on the idea of being a mom. I was dedicating an hour, 6 days a week to going 100%. That’s absolutely too much for me and I accept that. I was also putting junk into my body and had the mindset that if I worked out, it would all balance. I was wrong.
A few weeks ago, I had a meltdown because my mindset had me in a huge panic. What’s going to happen to me if I keep eating like shit and can’t work out? I sat for a hot minute, felt bad for myself and then realized that I knew exactly what I needed to do. So, I went back to the nutrition program that healed me 5 years ago. This program is the one I always go back to when I need balance. It’s a way of eating that eliminates calorie counting and focuses on whole foods, healthy mindset and BALANCE. When I say God works in wonderful ways, what happened next was nothing short of a miracle.
The company who founded this program was offering a certification to train and coach others and I was all in. One of the perks of this system is that you don’t HAVE to work out to see results. Of course, physical activity will compliment it, but it’s not required. I knew it would be a great training to complete over the next weeks of my recovery.
Now that I had a handle on my health and a few weeks into my foundational fix plan, I realized why it’s my go-to. In two weeks of following, every side effect of the steroids I’d taken had disappeared. I dropped 5 pounds, felt so much more energized and clear-headed. I was myself again. I know that I am building a healthy home for my future children and for that, I am so thankful for this program.
But, it doesn’t stop there. I had one more item on the agenda of a healthy life. This one wasn’t going to be so easy to navigate. Cue my lifeline, the one who knows my whole life story and who I turn to when I just can’t navigate on my own: Mark.
My therapist has seen me through some dark shit. We have worked together to help me build a life that I am so proud of, but as with anything in life, I slid backwards. I had so much building on my plate that by the end of the day yesterday, I knew I needed him. I made an appointment, saw him right after school and came home feeling like I had rediscovered myself.
The point of this whole post is to remind you that life is all about making choices. We are all going to go through change. We are going to cross paths with people who make us better, pull us down, stress us out and changes us. But, all of it has a purpose. The ultimate goal in life is to build something you are proud of. I have a tendency of being all or nothing in relationships with people and eventually, it got the best of me. I was reminded last night that I control how I interact with people. I have the ability to control how I handle myself, how I engage with others and how I show up for the relationships I believe in. I realized that in an effort to people please, I’d been completely disingenuous to myself and as a result, projected that to the universe.
But, I’m happy to say that as with anything in life, I woke up today with a fresh mindset. I chose to embrace the people who make my life better. I chose to reevaluate the boundaries I had allowed to get cloudy and from this point on, make a conscious effort to keep them clear. I chose to love the people I want to love and I chose to give zero cares about how others perceive me.
I love hard and I care about those who matter to me. I give 100% to my friendships and choose to see the best in people. Sometimes, I gossip. Sometimes, I’m shallow. Sometimes, I say things I shouldn’t. I am far from perfect, but I don’t want to be anywhere near it. I just want to be real. I look forward to every single morning because it’s a chance to start fresh and bring joy to the world.
At the end of the day, life is what you make it. Do your best, embrace the chaos and be true to yourself.