The Scariest Day of My Life
from the archives
I've always been on the go, working and striving for better. Back in October (2016), I was forced to stop. I wanted to be hard-headed and worry, knowing damn well that's not where my focus should be. I got many signs from the universe that I should relax and take care of myself. But, like the old folks say, "If you don't hear, you must feel." Even though I am smiling in this photo, this was one of the scariest experiences of my life.
After passing out on the train, I was rushed to the ER, admitted to hospital, and hooked up to machines. I underwent endless tests and saw multiple doctors, including a later visit to a specialist, only to be told that I have some minor condition that is probably agitated by stress. My first reaction - "Ummm what?! Stress?" That was the biggest wake up call of my life. If I don't take better care of myself and learn how to relax, I can end up back at the hospital. Through that trying time I have learned a few lessons that I want to share with you:
Your health is more important than your worry. Even though we may think we are healthy or fit, a stressed out mind can and will eat away at your physical health.
Never underestimate the power of kindness, generosity, and humanity in others. When you are going through your mess, it's easy to fall into the trap of thinking no one cares. But given the chance, people always show the depths of care that we can have for one another. Strangers on the train kept me from seriously injuring myself when I passed out. I will never forget the woman who caught me on my way down, the young man who picked me up and carried me off the train, and the amazing paramedics, nurses, and doctors that took such good care of me. Special shout out to the random firefighters who poked their heads into my room to check in on me and everyone on the train that wished me well as I was being carried off (yes, it was a dramatic scene lol). Because of the kindness of a close friend, I didn't spend the night or the next few days alone. She was my rock. Through the generosity of another beautiful friend, I was able to go home to Jamaica and get the rest and restoration I needed.
Little things can be life changing. We create the world we live in, for others and for ourselves. Your actions have far greater consequences than you can ever imagine. It is important to take accountability for who you are! Self-care starts with you. Even if it's 5 minutes a day, take some time out to just love on you.
Choosing to put me first might mean leaving some people behind. Sometimes self-care means being selfish. Selfish with your time, with your gifts, with your love, with your energy. I've found joy in saying, "NO, I'm not going out tonight because I need rest." or "NO, I don't want to hang out with you because I don't think you will add to my life." Ok, maybe I won't say all that but I will say NO and feel perfectly happy about it.
Since you are saying NO to so many things make sure you are replacing them with a ton of YES for you. YES to that manicure (or if you've got a little more room in the budget then YES to that massage). YES to the bubble bath with candles and sexy music. YES to sleeping in once in a while. YES to that sexy bikini that hugs your body just right. You get the idea. Take damn good care of you!
In keeping with #5, I have said YES to Self-Care Sundays. Sundays are my days to completely relax and recharge. I hope that in sharing my story and continually sharing how I take care of myself I will inspire you to love on yourself. Don't let a trip to the hospital be your wake up call. This is it.
For my Self-Care Tips check out this video.