Imagine one of those women that are radiant when they are pregnant. Maybe they say things like “I’ve never felt so beautiful” or “I feel so connected to all of life.” Got that image? Now imagine the opposite, and you will know what kind of pregnant woman I was.
I did not like being pregnant, mostly because I was either vomiting or trying not to vomit for the entire pregnancy. It was no fun. And neither was the delivery. I’ll spare you the details but I will say it wrecked me a bit.
In fact, the whole experience left me with a real distrust of my body. Even after I healed, I couldn’t do things I did before. I couldn’t hike familiar trails without a lot of fear. At one point, I flat out refused to climb a hill I had climbed with ease before. I simply did not trust that my body would be able to get the job done.
I sat at the base of that hill as my husband and older daughter climbed, and I fumed. I was so angry at myself for letting fear win the day, but I was even angrier at my body for letting me down. Angry that it couldn’t carry and deliver a baby with ease and really angry that it had gotten sick. I felt like my power had been taken from me.
I don’t like feeling powerless, so after I fumed I came up with one tangible thing I could do to take my power back. I decided that I needed to work on my balance. I know it wasn’t the most dramatic idea, but it was a start.
I searched the YouTubes and found a 30-day yoga challenge at Yoga with Adriene. My life at that time was taking care of my daughters and building my business…which is to say that it was crazy busy with little to no routine. A 30-day yoga challenge that I could do at home was just the thing to work into the chaos of my day. I would either do the 10 to 30-minute set when the baby was content or sleeping or in the evenings when my husband was home. My only rule was to do the day’s session before bed.
Immediately, I started seeing results and not only in my ability to feel surer in my feet. I started to heal the connection between me and my body. My anxiety reduced, my body got stronger, and I became confident in my body’s ability to take care of me.
And while I think yoga is one of the most powerful tools ever, I don’t know that it can take all the credit. Looking back on that time, I see that I had a choice. I could have stayed angry and used the excuse of a busy life to do nothing, or I could take my power back. Through those 10 to 30 minutes every day, I did take my power back.
We all have excuses, and we all have busy lives. But we have to carve out time and a space to make sure that we have control over our health. If we leave our health to when the chaos stops, we leave our health for good. No matter the chaos of your days, you can always find a way to prioritize your health and take your power back. Because empowering ourselves through movement is one of the most loving acts we can take and one that will benefit us for years.
So what’s your loving act going to be? Let me know in the comments below.