The Pattern of Recovery

I focused on the pattern of my movements as we slowly walked along the trail. Suddenly the trees looked strange as my head felt dizzy. So I paused to breath in deeply and wait for the fog in my body to pass. I suddenly looked up to see a young stag standing still upon the hill. He stared back as the sun gently streamed through the trees above him. His fur coat almost blending in with the forest around him. For a moment life seemed to pause, and the world sent a gentle wave of peace through the awe and wonder of nature’s astounding beauty.

Montana has been good to Fern and I, but life does not come without its struggles. Some days are still better than others, as my body is still recovering from the lack of taking care of it properly over the last several years. I have struggled with adrenal fatigue since I got sick with pneumonia, and the whirlwind of life brought limited sleep and lack of eating that made it worse. I almost single handedly destroyed my own body because my stress coping strategy was to let it deteriorate like my emotions. Yet, it taught me a valuable lesson about how to persevere, even when your body is striking against you.

The fourth day of living in Montana, I decided to lace up my running shoes and attempt running after over a year of not being able to. As I moved my walk to a run, I felt strong and alive. My movement synched with my music as I stayed at a steady stride. Two days later, I set out for a run again, but this time my movements felt like sludge. Every muscle was tired and sore, and a side stitch made itself known. My adrenal fatigue seemed to kick in when I returned home, and the rest of my day felt slurred. But even on the rough days, I am thankful that I can still run, because it is something one should never take for granted.

Recovery seems to take on a similar pattern each time. I often take on a task far beyond my current capability, which causes me to stumble and fall. Even on Fern and I’s last hike, I was struggling, but I made it to the top of the mountain to gaze upon the beautiful valley we now call home. Maybe I am stubborn, or know how to push the limit, but I have never regretted any time I have pushed past my body’s wanting to stop, because it always led me someplace amazing.

Some days are meant for rest, some days are meant for writing, and some days are meant for adventure. Learning to take care of my body may be a life long battle, but I know my limits, and am willing to push them just a little bit more. I am lucky enough to have a great man who looks after me when I stumble, and who is there to celebrate when I triumph over this life long battle of health conditions.

The mountain air already fills my body with more strength than I have felt in a long time, but I still have to pace myself and give my body time to catch up with my wandering mind. This season is so important to recoup, regather, and revamp for future adventures. In the meantime, it gives me space and freedom to write more and be more than I have been. So no matter the usual pattern of recovery, I will choose to keep moving, keep loving, and keep living the very best I can.

Love and Light,

Bethany Jane

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