"On a scale of 1-10, what would you rate your pain?" echoed in my ears. As I laid on the Primary Care table flopping like a frantic fish, I screamed, "Beyond 10! Worse than childbirth pain!"
I was vomiting, and my insides were a volcanic eruption. The next thing I knew, I was strapped to a gurney and loaded into an ambulance. My next stop-E.R. then O.R.
I had two surgeries. It took all summer and half of this year to recover fully.
Lately, my discovered disease reared its ugly head. Except for this time, I was ready. I may not be a quick study, but I do learn lessons involving pain quickly.
What's the difference between the discovery, hospital experience, and now?
I've slowed down. Instead of continuing at warped speed and not recognizing or acknowledging a loose lug nut that causes a wheel to fall off and a full-blown crash, I paused. Instead of masking symptoms and continuing to roll, I pulled over. I tuned into what my body was signaling.
Is your body waving a yellow or white flag? Is it trying to tell you something?
Slow down. Tune in. Listening and prevention will save you time. STRONG educators rest and revive.
So recently I took some days off. I did all the preventive measures possible, and still, there's a dull, nagging pain. I'll go to the doctor (again). But this time, there's a simple solution without nearly a year's recovery.
Why do I tell you this? Because as educators, we often ignore the signs. We miss our needs because we are taking care of everything and everybody else.
We live with a tension of opposites. We know what we need to do, but we often don't do it. Or maybe we haven't slowed down enough to sense the symptoms of our needs.
I beg you. Tune into your body's signals like you tune into your favorite Spotify playlist. I once heard the following truth:
If you don't take time for health now, you'll have to make time for illness later.
When you take time to rest and revive, you're more likely to hear your body's needs. Stress strips our health in visible and invisible ways. (And we all know teaching & leading in education is stressful.) Do you need to pay attention to your mental, physical, or spiritual health? Don't ignore the signs.
So, on a scale of 1-10, what's your energy or pain level?
You make a difference!
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Learn more about being STRONG & how to cultivate life-changing relationships with families and students in my upcoming book. I share personal student stories and strategies for cultivating culture and community rooted in relationships. It's centered around amplifying all students' potential and unshakeable relationships that raise student achievement. Coming out 2021.