Before I got sick, I thought I understood the meaning of “discipline.” I was the straight-A student, the one who could study ten hours for an accounting exam (with a flu!). That tells you something about why I’m in this Lyme fix in the first place, doesn’t it?
Never mind that. My point is, studying for those exams, getting up at 4 AM every day to go jogging, and all that stuff I used to do which required discipline…feels like nothing compared to the self-determination I’ve had to exercize in my healing regimen. Just getting out of bed at 9 AM, after ten hours of rest, is a feat. Every morning, I have to talk my body into parting from the bedsheets.
Me to the body: “Come on, let’s get up, it’s almost nine-thirty.”
The body: “Ah, just a few more minutes like this.”
Me: “No! If it were up to you, we’d stay stuck beneath this comforter all day long!”
The body: “And what’s wrong with that? We can watch movies from here…”
Me: “As it is, we hardly get anything done! Now get up, you’re wasting my life!”
The body: “Don’t push me. If you push me, I’ll rebel even further…”
And that’s just the first fifteen minutes of the day! But the biggest acts of discipline which I should give myself a blue ribbon for, are those which require use of the word “No.”
No chocolate, no pizza, no bread, no pasta, no beer….in short, no yummy food! (As far as my taste buds are concerned) .
No late nights, no going out, period….because my borrowed income doesn’t stretch far enough to pay for the occasional movie.
No deviating from the stiffly structured daily routine….Supplements every hour, on the hour, exercize, sauna, enemas, Rifing, other therapies…and bedtime by 11 PM sharp or I’ll PAY the next day with a hefty price tag of fatigue and brain fog.
No splurging on vanity items, such as clothing, music or a nice read.
So as I give myself the Connie Just Say No Award, I reconsider….
That the things I have to say “No” to, are precisely the things that most of U.S. society depends on for its happiness—stimulating activities, tasty (but unhealthy) food and new toys. In other words–greed, gluttony and materialism. While it still hurts to say “No” to these things, I guess I’m finally learning, after two years, to redefine what it means to have a fulfilling life.
I can’t ski, but I can have a great conversation with my mom beside a warm, cozy fireplace.
I can’t have chocolate, but I can have almond butter and watch my skin glow like never before
I can’t work, but I don’t have to get up at 4 AM and battle road rage for two hours a day.
I can’t buy the latest fashions, but who do I have to impress, anyway?